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Entries in Adaptations (124)

Wednesday
Apr082015

April Foolish Oscar Discussion: Animated Features

These two specialized categories can be perplexing from the outside, documentaries moreso, as to what is eligible, why it's eligible, and what motivates people to vote as they do. The official eligibility lists don't arrive until later in the year but for now on the new charts we'll add documentary titles as they make some kind of mark and we'll dive right into animated features, which apart from the foreign produced entries, are much easier to track.

Pixar vs Pixar this year?

This upcoming Oscar season, Walt Disney Studios Animation will be out of the mix after two consecutive wins. Their next features Zootopia and Moana, which both look quite promising, aren't due until March and November of 2016. To fill that giant vacuum, Pixar will likely come roaring back after an uncharacteristic absence last year with two titles Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur

But the contest that's most curious might not be a contest... at least in terms of Oscar. We have two features that are trading on collective international nostalgia for 2D classic properties: The Little Prince and Peanuts Movie. But they're both getting the CG or mixed media approach. That's not so odd since contemporary cinema loves to regurgitate and "update" (shudder) but what's unusual is that both films are clearly trying to mix the endearing flat linework and visual style of these beloved gems into newly three dimensional worlds. A safe bet: these films, particularly The Little Prince which looks "schizophrenic", will be divisive. 

Check out the charts! Which of these films are you most curious about and do you agree with the April Foolish guesswork? 

 

Saturday
Mar282015

Superheroes, Shakespeares, Stonewalls, and Series Endings

Lukewarm off the presses: Here's a collection of things we didn't get around to talking and/or linking to for your enjoyment or conversation prompting. We always hope for both. And I'm always hoping to empty out my "things to write about immediately" desktop folder... which is never emptied out.

• Terrence Malick's new movie (the one right after Knight of Cups) will be called Weightless (no cracks about how skinny Portman, Blanchett, Fassbender, and Rooney Mara, who star, are) but it's about music and its set in Austin. Apparently there's Madonna, Bob Dylan and Arcade Fire songs or something? Who knows. In truth I don't know why I'm sharing this info. Fact: Malick movies are only interesting in the watching of them, not in the hearing about their development since that's always totally vague.

• Glenn Kenny wrote a lovely piece about his mother's love of Alfred Hitchcock movies (she recently died) and he brings up an interesting point about how older audiences of either gender remember and loved his work. Do you know what your parents favorite Hitchcock's were?

• Look! It's Jeremy Irvine in action director Roland Emmerich's first gay drama Stonewall (2015) -- that and plenty of other things are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar232015

Cast This: Carole King Musical Headed to the Screen

Manuel here bringing you news of the latest Broadway musical to make the leap to the big screen. Yes, we’re still waiting on more Wicked news, I’d love an update on that McG version of Spring Awakening I keep willing to disappear, and I can’t be the only one excited to see what Bill Condon is going to do with animated gem and Broadway smash Beauty and the Beast but the news come courtesy of Sony Pictures who will be adapting Beautiful: The Carole King Musical

As the helpfully blunt title tells us, the musical is a jukebox biopic of the famed songrwriter. I’m sure they’re hoping for a Mamma Mia! type hit and less of a Jersey Boys type miss, but that will likely come down to execution, marketing, buzz and many other elements we can ignore at this early step of the game.

the great singer songwriter Carole King back in her heydayJessie Mueller won the Tony award for Best Actress at last year’s Tonys and while she’s clearly very talented (she was my Cinderella at the Shakespeare in the Park’s production of Into the Woods a few years back), I’m guessing they might go with a bigger name for this star-vehicle. Unless they hope King is enough of a name to get people into seats?

Anyone care to play casting director?

Does Beautiful have a friend in you as it hopes to charm your mom into going to the movies to hum along to King’s tunes?

 

Wednesday
Mar182015

We Can't Wait #3: Macbeth

Team Experience is counting down our 15 most anticipated for 2015. Here's David to kick off the top 3...

Who & What: Yes, there have been countless Shakespeare adaptations through cinematic history, although the Scottish play is one of the Bard’s biggest plays that (perhaps) hasn’t landed a definitive English language adaptation as of yet (Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood will admittedly take some beating) – and that’s with auteurs as legendary as Orson Welles and Roman Polanski having taken a crack at it. Justin Kurzel, the Australian newbie who was much admired for the jagged savagery of his debut feature The Snowtown Murders, is in the directing chair, and has the awesome pairing of Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard as his royal Scottish schemers. 

People getting in the way of their bloodthirsty lust for power include David Thewlis’ Duncan, Paddy Considine’s Banquo, rising star Jack Reynor as Malcolm and The Great Gatsby’s Elizabeth Debicki as Lady MacDuff. Behind the camera, talent includes cinematographer Adam Arkapaw (Snowtown, Animal Kingdom), production designer Fiona Crombie (Snowtown, Top of the Lake) and our beloved costumer Jacqueline Durran.


Why we're excited about it: Ever since it was announced, Kurzel taking on what might be the Bard’s most gruesome pieces of work has seemed like a delectable proposition, with Snowtown’s eerie form promising a take on the greed, manipulation and psychological demonics of Macbeth that doesn’t skimp on the utter blackness at its heart. Add two of the world’s finest – not to mention most beautiful – performers at the centre, plus all of that additional talent, and this apparently ‘gothic’ take on the material can hardly fail.

What if it all goes wrong?: Well, it’s been a long wait – is that something to be worried about? Hopefully not; a preview at Cannes last year seemed to impress, and Kurzel probably didn’t want to rush it out of the editing room just for awards. Natalie Portman’s exit from the project was never explained, but it doesn’t seem to have augured any rumours of trouble in the production.

When: What with those Oscar rumblings last year, we’d wager it’ll be a long, impatient wait until some time near the end of the year, ready for next Oscar season, especially with The Weinstein Company involved. IMDb lists November and December dates for France and Sweden, but every other country is still awaiting news of when the latest take on the Bard’s most infamous play will arrive.

Previously...
Friday
Mar132015

Posterized: Director Kenneth Branagh

Cinderella reuniteds director Kenneth Branagh with his former star and ex-lover Helena Bonham-Carter (in the fairy godmother role)Though Kenneth Branagh had acted in three movies in the 1980s before his international breakthrough, he arrived as a star in a quite a multihypenate way. His adaptation of Shakespeare's Henry V (1989) won him instant celebrity as an actor-writer-director. Here's a fun fact -- all five of his Oscar nominations are in different categories: Actor (Henry V), Supporting Actor (My Week With Marilyn), Director (Henry V), Screenplay (Hamlet), Live-Action Short (Swan Song). People forget this now when they wonder about how easily he won a nomination for playing Oscar's beloved Laurence Olivier in My Week With Marilyn but it was something of a inevitability and a cute narrative. Branagh had been compared to Sir Laurence Olivier right from his supernova start in 1989 since Sir Laurence Olivier was also an actor/director who thrilled modern audiences in his time with interpretations of Shakespeare plays for the movies.

Branagh's movie stardom has long since taken a backseat to his directing work -- in truth it began to dwindle as soon as his magical partnership with Emma Thompson crumbled -- but with his 14th movie, Disney's live action Cinderella (2015) opening today, let's look back at his time in the director's chair through movie posters.

How many of these 14 films have you seen? 

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar112015

5 Suggestions for that Newly Announced DumBurton Film

Manuel here with your daily Disney update. By now you’ve probably already heard that Tim Burton, he of Alice in Wonderland & Big Eyes fame has signed on to direct a live-action adaptation of beloved Disney property Dumbo. With it, of course, came cries of “IS NOTHING SACRED?!” despite large corporations (in particular the Mouse House) constantly letting us know that, no, actually nothing is. Especially when we’re all so eager to shell out money for Phase 1 of their live action remake roster.

So, rather than rehearse those conversations (“What will they turn to next; Fantasia?!”) or snarkily, if gleefully, begin to imagine what other director/Disney film pairings we could come up with (Fincher’s Ursula, Bigelow’s Mulan, Apatow’s Hercules…), I figured we’d offer some suggestions for this Dumburton film:

• Cast Andy Serkis as Dumbo (or maybe Sean Gunn who did such great work on Rocket Raccoon?)
• Steer away from casting Johnny Depp (no one wants to see his take on Timothy Q. Mouse)
• If you’ll be recruiting past collaborators, make us excited about seeing what Colleen Atwood & Dennis Gassner could do with a circus (they did such great work on Big Fish)
• Gender-bend this mostly male story; might the crows be an all-female gang? (think of it: Ricci! Davis! Ryder! Green! Pfeiffer!)
• Keep it weird (but not Mad Hatter dancing weird, more like ‘is this really a drug-induced elephant dancing sequence?’ weird).

I’m sure we all have strong opinions on this one, so let’s hear ‘em! Are you the teensiest bit excited about this or is Disney’s cash-grab go back-to-the-animation-well more unsavory than when they used it to cast Glenn Close as Cruella DeVil back in the 90s?