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"I'm crushed over this news but it appears "Looking" has been cancelled (confirmed by The Hollywood Reporter). But at least HBO will be giving it a special movie to wrap up the storylines." -Stan

We're also crushed. But thanks to Manuel for recapping this beautiful second season.

 

 

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Entries in Cast This! (28)

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?

 

Tuesday
Dec302014

CAST THIS: Pippin coming to the big screen!

Manuel here bringing some exciting news for us musical junkies.

We've got magic to do... Just for you

It seems we have another big screen Broadway adaptation coming our way courtesy of Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, a pair of producers who have almost single-handedly kept the screen musical alive. NBC’s Sound of Music Live? Zadan & Meron! Oscar-winning Chicago, SAG-nominated Hairspray and Emmy-nominee Smash? Yep, you guessed it: Zadan & Meron! They are even responsible for some of the less celebrated attempts at live action adaptations of Broadway musicals, from the swiftly forgotten 2003 adaptation of The Music Man featuring Matthew Broderick and the Kathy Bates-led 1999 Annie to the Bette Midler TV adaptation of Gypsy back in 1993.

Needless to say, they’re invested in this genre in ways not many other producers are. We can argue about their batting average. For every attempt at ‘modernizing’ a piece to its very detriment -- see 2011’s Footloose, there’s an ill-fated attempt at old-fashioned family entertainment like this year’s Peter Pan Live! Which brings us back to Pippin, the 1972 Stephen Schwartz penned musical loosely based on Pippin and his father Charlemagne, whose circus-inspired Broadway revival is set to close this weekend and which Zadan and Meron are bringing to the big screen soon.

 

I’m curious as to who they nab for directing (though maybe more importantly for screenwriting duties). This is a clearly stage-bound piece: the conceit is that what we see on stage is a number of players acting out the story of Pippin as, in true 1970s fashion, he tries to “find himself.” The original production was directed by Bob Fosse, so these are definitely big shoes to fill. More for our amusement though, this offers up the chance to play casting directors. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the show, I’ve broken down the main characters below from the casting call the American Repertory Theatre used to cast the revival.


PIPPIN
- male, 18-26. The son of Charlemagne and heir to the throne of the Holy Roman Empire, Pippin has returned from university to discover that he does not know what to do with his life. He searches for something in his life to be fulfilling, while the Leading Player and the troupe of players guide and manipulate him. Tenor.

LEADING PLAYER
- (Can be male or female)- Dangerous, charismatic, extremely charming and seductive, the Leading Player is the leader of the troupe and the mastermind behind Pippin's journey. The Leading Player must be an incredibly strong performer with the willingness to take risks and dig deep and dark; a powerful presence. Male: Tenor, Female: Alto/Mezzo with a strong belt.

CHARLEMAGNE
-male, late 40s-early 60s, Pippin’s father and the King of the Holy Roman Empire. He rules the empire with an iron fist, and his focus on the battlefield inspires Pippin to try becoming a soldier. Legit Baritone.

FASTRADA female, early 40s-early 50s, Pippin’s stepmother, Charlemagne’s wife, and Lewis’s mother. A manipulative woman with sexual appeal and a strong desire for power, Fastrada aims to get her son Lewis to be first in line to the throne. Dancer.

LEWIS
-male, early 20s-early 30s, The son of Charlemagne and Fastrada, Pippin’s half brother. He is a soldier in Charlemagne's army and he prides himself on his athleticism and physical prowess.

BERTHE
-female, early 60s-80s. Pippin’s grandmother, and Charlemagne’s mother. An incredibly spunky older woman with excellent comedic timing, Berthe leaves the kingdom to enjoy the "simple joys" of life. Alto.

CATHERINE
-female, late 20s-early 30s. Pippin’s love interest, a tragically widowed farmer’s wife with a young son. She rebels against the Leading Player's scheme by actually falling in love with Pippin. She is kind, generous, romantic, and strong-willed. Mezzo with a strong mix.

Who would you cast for each? I'm hoping they don't offer Berthe to Meryl, if only because I want Andrea Martin to reprise her Tony winning role on screen. Does news of Pippin the big screen treatment fill you with, as Nat mentioned in his Into the Woods review, a hesitation “between devastating disappointment and ecstatic pleasure”?

Tuesday
Nov252014

Cast This! Steve McQueen's Actressful Gangster Movie 'Widows'

The story: three armed robbers are killed during a planned heist, leaving behind three widows. Under pressure from the police and rivals to their late husbands' crime business, they team up to carry out the robbery themselves, enlisting another widow in the process. CEO of New Regency Brad Wilson, who financed 12 Years and will be producing again on this project, said it will be McQueen's "own version of a gangster film..[it] gives him the commercial jumping-off point, but then allows him to twist it into a Steve McQueen film."

Now, doesn't that just make you say "Oooooh"?

The film will take place in a modern-day American city instead of in the U.K., and will likely end up with a different title, but promises to be a showcase for four actressing talents. The plan is to be in pre-production by year's end.

Naturally, our question here at TFE is who should play the widows? Detailed character information is frustratingly scarce, but the parts are Dolly (the woman they turn to leadership), Shirley, Linda, and the addition to their group is Bella. The property has been dramatized three times with two British series (one in the 80s and one in the 90s) and an American mini in 2002 with Mercedes Reuhl & Rosie Perez. Did any of you see the latter?

My picks would be Michelle Pfeiffer for Dolly (Married to the Mob, you guys!), with Rosario Dawson, Jenny Slate, and Lupita Nyong'o filling out the rest of the team.

Make a case for your dream cast in the comments!

Friday
Aug152014

Nicole's Return. The Dates Are Ever Changing.

When will our beloved Kidman return to us? For someone who works so consistently, doesn't it seem like it's hard to find Nicole Kidman in a movie theater? Grace of Monaco keeps threatening to arrive but never does leaving us to wonder if it will ever play in regular movie theaters after its shaming at Cannes (that place can be brutal). Any big dreams for the quality of Paddington (it comes from charming source material at least) her Christmas film, have been dashed by that hateful slapstick trailer and Colin Firth's exit as the voice. The wait is soon over though. For those of you who missed The Railway Man in theaters, it's just out on DVD and Blu-Ray. [Warning: Nicole's part is small enough that when the climax arrives, she's literally a blurry figure in the background.]

 

Next up though is the thriller Before I Go To Sleep which has a new poster (above) and a new release date: Halloween to be exact. Let's just hope it's better than The Invasion or Trespass. (It's apparently really hard to make a good thriller post-Hitchcock because not that many filmmakers are skilled at making them.)

After that picture all us Kidmaniacs will wait again for her other completed films to play the release date shell game. Most promising by far is Werner Herzog's Gertrud Bell biopic Queen of the Desert both because Herzog is an amazing director (another feather in Kidman's auteur-fetish cap!) and because the role is big and central. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like Queen of the Desert is doing the fall festival circuit so maybe they're waiting until 2015?

CAST THIS!
This is one of those stories that was so obviously a Film Experience type of story that I pretended to myself that I'd already covered it on the blog. Like those dreams you have where you already went to class or work so there's no need to jump up and go when you wake up! Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon are now attached to the film adaptation of Liane Moriarty's comic best seller Big Little Lies about a group of three mothers whose kids are in the same Kindergarten class in a beautiful Australian seaside town (with secrets, natch). A sprained ankle sets off a series of events which eventually leads to a school riot and a murder. There are three major characters (and apparently a lot of broadly drawn but possibly scene-stealing supporting casts). No word yet on which of the moms Nicole & Reese are planning to play but obviously a third star will be joining them.

These are the characters...

Madeline: gleefully extroverted, fashionable, and still a "glittery girl" at 40. Her broken Dolce & Gabbana heel sets the plot in motion. She's happily married but still having trouble with her ex and his younger "new age-y" wife
Celeste: a nervous very beautiful mom with twins, who is married to a wealthy man
Jane: shy, plain and uncomfortable in her own skin. New in town but Madeline and Celeste befriend this single mom when her son gets in trouble the very first day of school

YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO PICK THEIR ROLES FOR THEM AND ADD A THIRD ACTRESS IN THE COMMENTS!

Let's just pray this wasn't doesn't go the way of The Danish Girl which Nicole was attached to for quite some time until development hell took it from her plate. The film is still trying to get made but instead of an actress in the transgender lead role it's now Eddie Redmayne with his Les Miz director Tom Hooper guiding him through the transformation. 

Monday
Aug042014

Linkbusters

HitFix Paul Feig (Bridesmaids) may well remake Ghostbusters with a female cast. I'm normally against do-overs unless you significantly reinvent so best wishes to all
Roger Ebert the Jacques Demy collectio. WANT
MNPP Lee Pace & Matt Bomer went to high school together. Awwww
MNPP which is hotter, Dick (1999) anniversary!
Guardian Christina Hendricks interviewed about Mad Men and more. Her original agency dropped her when she took the Joan Harris part. D'oh!
Gothamist funny Julie Klausner on Jonathan Demme's Stop Making Sense
Shortpacked! a webcomic for everyone like me who feels totally alone in not liking Guardians of the Galaxy very much 
Coming Soon a boring onset shot of Daredevil's altar ego Matt Murdock in his lawyer drag from the new Netflix series
AV Club talks to Brendan Gleeson abouv Calvary, Harry Potter and more
Cinema Blend they're making Richard Linklater's School of Rock into a TV series
Nick's Flick Picks Nick and Joe have completed their choices for the "best of" the year's first half with leading performances and Best Picture. Good smart read with lots of love for Blue Ruin, Only Lovers Left Alive, Edge of Tomorrow
Coming Soon James Gunn teases work on Guardians of the Galaxy sequel. Whew, already?
Comics Alliance Comparing Guardians to The Last Starfighter, an 80s sci-fi flick
Boy Culture reviews Oscar winner Lee Grant's autobiography "I'd Still Say Yes" 
Slant Magazine reviews a biography on Joss Whedon 

Cast This! It appears that there's going to be a movie called Russ & Roger Go Beyond about the making of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970). Who should play that infamous movie's celebrated writer Roger Ebert?

Finally...
Why did no one tell me about Vance Joy's "Riptide" which is now as far as I can tell like a year old. Love the emphatic fantasy of this lyric, duh!

 

I just gotta, I just gotta know
I can't have it, I can't have it any other way
I swear she's destined for the screen
Closest thing to Michelle Pfeiffer that you've ever seen, oh 

Saturday
May102014

Cast This: Can We Get a Patricia Highsmith Biopic Up in Here?

We're getting three starry Patricia Highsmith adaptations in the next year or so at the cinemas. First up is The Two Faces of January (Viggo, Kiki & Oscar Isaac) and then Carol (Cate, Rooney & Sarah Paulson). 

 The latest to ready itself for the cameras is The Blunderer. The cast will include Patrick Wilson, Jessica Biel, Imogene Poots and Toby Jones. 

Highsmith adaptations are nothing new for the cinema and soon there will be little left to adapt.

Walter Stackhouse (Wilson) is a successful architect married to the beautiful Clara (Biel) and leading a charmed and perfect life. But his fascination with an unsolved murder leads him into a spiral of chaos as he is forced to play cat-and-mouse with a clever killer (Jones) and an over-ambitious detective. Walter's obsession, his lies and his lust for another woman (Poots) will collide in a crush of guilt, innocence and, ultimately, fate.

Highsmith adaptations are nothing new for the cinema and soon there will be little left to adapt.

But why hasn't anyone made a biopic yet?

She was a complicated character in her looks, her art, and her temperament: famously misanthropic (and racist, too), an alcoholic, complicated lifelong relationship with her mother (who once confessed to trying to abort her) who lived to be 95, bisexual with volatile affairs, and a crazy cat lady to boot.

Who should play her in a biopic?  Two names came immediately to my mind but I want to know your thoughts before I reveal them. A few more pictures after the jump [one NSFW] and a few more notes about Hollywood's interest in her work. 

Click to read more ...

Friday
Mar282014

Cast This: "Magic Mike XXL"

Channing & Pettyfer in the originalThe Magic Mike sequel is gearing up to start filming in the fall. The Playlist reports that Steven Soderbergh's long time first AD Gregory Jacobs will direct so they're keeping it in house and the film will be called Magic Mike XXL a title of which we approve.

What we do not approve of is the rumors that most of the original cast will return. The last film ended with a clear parting of the ways so it makes sense to move on at least to some extent with new characters. Channing Tatum has promised in the past that the sequel will be more like what people were expecting from the first one so I guess that means more of a fleshy spectacle? Anyway, the first film was terrific (and not just for the fleshy spectacle) but this kind of project begs for fresh blood meat, not sloppy seconds you know? Frankly, they should only keep one or two of the players to keep the energy up while the clothes are off.

So, let's pretend they wise up and bring in new players. Last time they went with a mix of 20-40somethings and actors from both TV and film -- they can't be too famous though or they'd pass. But there are literally hundreds of men who would qualify. Here's a few suggestions to diversify a bit to get you started.

Nicholas Hoult, Max Greenfield, Jesse Williams, Kit Harrington, Michael Ealy, Diego Boneta, Harry Shum Jr, Lee Pace. I could go on and on...

And that's basically just eight hot affordable men with some degree of fame (but not huge movie careers ... apart from arguably Hoult) who don't have to do too much training to get in shape for it. Your turn! Who would you love to see dance their (clothes off) ass off with Chan?