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FOXCATCHER & GONE GIRL teasers...

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Entries in Rooney Mara (26)

Thursday
Mar132014

Rooney Mara pans out

In case you missed the rather glum-making news: it's been newly announced that Rooney Mara has been cast as Tiger Lily, the classic problematic representation of Native Americans as written down by an Edwardian Brit, in Joe Wright's new movie Pan. Details are still fuzzy, but the impression one gets is that it's an attempt to bring the dark-and-gritty approach to the Peter Pan story (an it's an origin story, too!), which isn't the first place I'd have expected the director of Atonement and Anna Karenina to go.


But let's not lose sight of the main thrust, which is that Rooney Mara is playing a Native American princess. Whitewashing in the casting process isn't a new problem, but I can't remember the last time it happened this vividly (it even makes thing worse, on a number of levels, to find that Mara apparently beat Lupita Nyong'o for the part). The filmmakers have indicated that they're creating a deliberately "multi-racial/international" take one the material, but with Mara joining Hugh Jackman and Garrett Hedlund as the confirmed cast members so far, one wonders if the PR flack who put that sound-bite out there is still living, what with his pants having erupted into flames and all.

The internet, including the Film Experience, has been busily discussing the issue of casting able-bodied persons as disabled characters these past few days; it's a conversation that needs to happen, but it's galling to step back and realise that we haven't even finished fighting the easy representational battles yet.

Saturday
Feb012014

We Can't Wait #1: Carol

[The Film Experience's "We Can't Wait" series, highlighting the most exciting prospects of the 2014 film year concludes with new contributor Matthew Eng (you loved his Jennifer Lawrence piece) on the latest from Todd Haynes, long absent from the big screen. Thank you to Amir for managing this anticipatory series! - Nathaniel]

Carol
Set in 1950s New York City and based on the classic yet long-neglected novel of the same name (originally published under the title "The Price of Salt") by Patricia Highsmith (The Talented Mr Ripley), Carol traces the blossoming lesbian romance between Carol, an older, dissatisfied housewife, and Therese, a young, infatuated shop girl. 

Talent
At long last, that magnificent maverick Todd Haynes makes his long-awaited return to the big screen, a full seven years after I’m Not There, with a sterling cast that includes soon-to-be two-time Oscar winner Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara (stepping in for Mia Wasikowska) as the film’s central couple, as well as the recently-announced Sarah Paulson as Blanchett’s gal pal. Phyllis Nagy (HBO’s Mrs. Harris) is scripting, and movie maestro Carter Burwell (FargoWhere the Wild Things Are) is scoring the thing.

Why We Can’t Wait
If only the directors you loved most were the ones who were most prolific. Yes, it’s probably harder for a filmmaker as gloriously provocative and fearlessly risk-taking as Todd Haynes to get a new project off the ground than it is for say, Woody Allen or Tyler Perry to. But the movies need Todd Haynes, who hasn’t exactly been napping in the years since I’m Not There, even though his last buzzed-about effort, the 2011 HBO miniseries adaptation of Mildred Pierce, is likely to be remembered more as a mega-sized Kate Winslet awards-magnet than it is as a feat of occasionally flat but more typically immersive and intelligent filmmaking.

Haynes has assembled a rich, actressexual-pleasing cast of actors for Carol, including his I’m Not There star Blanchett, who, with this and Blue Jasmine, seems poised to have something like a Jennifer Lawrence-year in 2014, with two buzzy, presumably Oscar-friendly performances within only two years of each other; Mara, who I’d like to continue her string of smart and striking work, in projects more deserving of her than unsavory slop like Side Effects; and Paulson, who was so indelibly tense and terrifying in 12 Years a Slave and whose current career surge is a delight to witness. Carol, which caused quite a stir during its initial publication in 1952 for its uninhibited and unashamed depictions of homosexuality and female agency, sounds like a perfect fit for Haynes, who is one of our most groundbreaking gay filmmakers . He's made a commendable career out of wrestling madly and marvelously with explicitly queer ideas of desire, obsession, and identity. Plus, the last time Haynes worked in a fifties milieu...

...need I say more?

But We Do Have to Wait
Filming hasn’t even begun yet, likely due to the fact that Cate Blanchett couldn’t possibly provide us with the most priceless acceptance speeches of this awards season and deliver yet another tremendous performance, right on the designer heels of Jasmine. But have no fear, shooting commences in the spring, in both New York and London, with the Weinsteins distributing and Haynes’ go-to collaborator Christine Vachon and her indie outlet Killer Film producing. A release date is still TBD, but so very highly anticipated. We may never stop having to wait those grueling five, six, or seven years betwen Todd Haynes creations  on the big screen. But when they do arrive, they make you wonder how your moviegoing life ever went on without them. 

The Complete List of "We Can't Wait" Titles
We'll be following all these titles closely this year! Which of your most awaited, didn't make our list?
01 Carol (TBA)
02 The Grand Budapest Hotel (March)
03 Foxcatcher (TBA)
04 Under the Skin (April)
05 Inherent Vice (TBA)
06 Into the Woods (Christmas)
07 Snowpiercer (TBA)
08 Nymphomaniac (March)
09 Boyhood (May)
10 Big Eyes  (TBA)
11 The Last 5 Years (TBA)
12 Gone Girl (Oct)
13 Can a Song Save Your Life (TBA)
14 Veronica Mars (March)
Runners Up:  How to Catch a Monster, Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt 1,A Most Wanted Man, Godzilla, Untitled Public School Project, Tammy, Magic in the Moonlight, Far From the Madding Crowd, and Interstellar

Saturday
Oct122013

NYFF: A Few Thoughts on "Her"

Jose here. The New York Film Festival is coming to its end this weekend and earlier today we were treated to Spike Jonze's Her, which has its official world premiere at the festival tonight.

The film takes place in a not so distant future where human communications have evolved into something quite fascinating: people get paid to write handwritten letters, video games push your buttons and force you to try harder and computer operating systems have personalities that you can even fall for. This happens to the film's protagonist Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) who falls madly in love with his OS named Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson).

The film is a small masterpiece that will undoubtedly appear on endless Top Ten lists at the end of the year and here are a few random thoughts I had about the film and at the press conference that followed which included appearances from Jonze, Phoenix, Amy Adams, Rooney Mara and Olivia Wilde.

More Jonze, Phoenix and ScarJo after the jump!

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep122013

Nicole Kidman is Indestructible

Two items appeared on Page Six's feed back-to-back today.

Photo 1. A paparazzi on a bike reportedly "plowed" into Nicole Kidman here in NYC. Curse him. Memorize the face. Worst person ever. 

But no matter. Brush it off.

Photo 2. Moments later the actress is seen consuming/giving Fashion Week beauty with Rooney Mara & Naomie Harris, three peas in a goddess pod.

NOW, YES, I KNOW I KNOW.

These events actually occurred in the reverse order (and look at the grace with which she rises and brushes herself off in those photos!!!). An ambulance was called, she had some shoe trouble and was shaken up a bit.

But just go with my preferred order for a better story: the diva eternally unfazed by cruel media sabotage. We're running with a fantasies about Nicole Kidman theme. Indulge us. And get well soon, Nicole. Walk it off!

Thursday
Aug292013

Mia Out, Mara In. 

Jose here with this week's Rooney Mara news.

In case you haven't heard, Mia Wasikowska dropped out of Todd Haynes' Carol in which she was to star opposite Cate Blanchett and none other than my beloved Rooney Mara was chosen to replace her (a vast improvement if you ask me). The film is an adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's The Price of Salt which she published under a pseudonym because of its controversial subject: two women in love.

Blanchett will play a married woman who falls for a young department shop employee played by Mara. We all know Haynes is an impeccable director with a remarkable eye for period detail; even those who hated Mildred Pierce - how dare you! - were in awe of his attention to detail, which made it feel like a documentary more than a soapy drama. But above that, we know how great Haynes is with actresses. So this probably has secured them at least Golden Globe nods. The film doesn't star shooting until 2014 though, so we'll have to wait...

P.S. With Cate and Rooney onboard, A.K.A the best dressed women alive, and oft-Riccardo Tisci-muses we've also secured endless red carpet orgasms for 2014 (?).

How do you feel about the casting switch? Will Cate & Rooney have constant Givenchy-offs on the red carpet?  Share your thoughts!