Since kicking off her career in the early '90s, Renée Zellweger has been a largely polarizing actress: some love her, some... not so much. Even in some of her more universally acclaimed movies, like Jerry Maguire and Chicago, Zellweger has faced adversity for her performances. With this dichotomy of opinion, Zellweger is sure to earn some interesting reactions with her new project 4 1/2 Minutes, the actress' directorial debut.
The project, announced at the Toronto International Film Festival, and reported by Deadline, will star Zellweger and Johnny Knoxville in a story about a standup comedian (the Jackass headliner) whose life and career are significantly affected by the presence of the single mom (Zellweger) of a young genius. One can find a few similarities between this story and that of Jerry Maguire, the film that launched Zellweger to fame.
The script, written by Anthony Tambakis (Warrior), is reportedly based on the life of New Jersey-born comedian/actor Dov Davidoff.
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The Bridget Jones's Diary beauty will direct and star in 4 1/2 minutes, which follows Knoxville as a single comedian whose life begins to fall apart when he takes on a babysitting job, looking after Zellweger's genius son.
The project, based on real-life funnyman Dov Davidoff's past, will re-team the actress with writer Anthony Tambakis, who also penned her new TV drama Cinnamon Girl and the script to her upcoming Broadway adaptation of The Hustler.
Filming is set to begin in New York City in February (12), according to Deadline.com.
Invincible is Rudy and The Rookie all rolled into one. Set in the mid-‘70s Mark Wahlberg stars as the real-life Vince Papale a blue-collar Philadelphian down on his luck after his wife leaves him. His only solace is playing football with his cronies and rooting for his beloved Philadelphia Eagles who are in a real rut. Newly hired head coach the legendary Dick Vermeil (Greg Kinnear) decides to infuse some new blood into the team by holding open tryouts. All of Vince’s friends think he’d be perfect and urge him to go for it. He does makes it and is soon playing with some of his idols much to their chagrin. I mean who is this punk anyway? Sure he’s got some excellent instincts but can he really be a NFL player with no experience? Yes in fact he can proving to all those regular Joes out there you can live the dream. Yeah yeah. Unfortunately none of the actors really add anything either. Wahlberg is definitely a natural to play this kind of role having already done so in Rock Star. At least in Invincible he gets to show off some of his athletic abilities rather than just his bare chest in black leather pants. But the performance is run of the mill. As is Kinnear who as Vermeil takes on the headaches of turning a losing team into winners all while his supportive wife sweetly reassures him he’s doing the very best he can. Seen it. To their credit some of the supporting actors—including Kirk Acevedo (The New World) Michael Kelly (Dawn of the Dead) and Michael Rispoli (Mr. 3000)—paint a convincing picture of genuine camaraderie between local Philadelphians. And Elizabeth Banks (The 40 Year-Old Virgin) rounds things out as Vince’s cute love interest (and eventual real-life wife) who knows a few things about football by golly. You’d think Invincible would be a no-brainer feel-good kind of sports flick. It’s based on a real-life person has that whole underdog thing going for it and it’s football. What could go wrong with that? Nothing really besides the fact it’s been done about a hundred times over—and has now been left in the hands of newbies. First-time director Ericson Core a former cinematographer and writer Brad Gann are clearly green doing things by the play book line for line. It’s scary helming a feature film for a big studio like Disney who had such sport hits like The Rookie and Remember the Titans. Perhaps Core wanted to go more out on a limb but was reigned in. Who knows? The football scenes are definitely the highlight and Core handles the action well. I mean you do want Papale to prove himself the natural athlete he truly is and make all his homies proud. But the rest of it is just blah.