A teenager who showed maturity above his years, Salerno was known for donning conservative suits and displaying a reserved and polite manner. Even at this young age, Salerno was determined to get on t...
Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein has given the green light for a feature film based on the life of late author J.D. Salinger. Weinstein's studio is behind a new documentary about The Catcher in the Rye novelist, Salinger, which hit cinemas this month (Sep13), and the movie mogul is now working with the project's director, Shane Salerno, on a biopic.
Salerno confirmed the news in a statement, which reads, "(I) look forward to continuing my relationship with Harvey and TWC (The Weinstein Company) in developing a narrative film about this brilliant, intriguing man."
Book fetishists all agree that publishing needs to stay afloat, at any cost. But the parallel release of the David Shields/Shane Salerno book about the hermit that defined a generation, Salinger, and the documentary of the same name by Salerno raises the first question Holden Caulfield would have asked. Is it way too phony?
Never mind the New York subway posters claiming the book will change the way you think about Salinger. What is the subtext of the dust cover that refers to it as the “The Official Book of the Acclaimed Documentary Film?”
This chicken/egg synergy hedges the strangest bet: that two floundering but august forms of cultural production might help each other out in the marketplace, and a doc can transform a biography into page-turner. This flick might: there are enough celebrity talking heads in it to fill a red carpet.
It’s counterintuitive, but my guess is that best sellers make more money than documentaries. Books have longer shelf lives. Ask Salinger. And if the claims are true about the imminent flood of manuscripts Salinger tucked away for posthumous publication, there will be another party grinning ear to ear. The Salinger estate.
More:Ellen Is More Family Friendly Than Seth McFarlaneWatch the 'Salinger' Trailer5 Things You Didn't Know About J.D. Salinger
From Our Partners:40 Most Revealing See-Through Red Carpet Looks (Vh1)15 Stars Share Secrets of their Sex Lives (Celebuzz)
Hollywood actor Arnold Schwarzenegger will not be reuniting with The Terminator director James Cameron in Avatar 2, despite earlier reports suggesting otherwise. On Monday (16Sep13) sources told Latino Review that the veteran star has been cast as a villain in the sci-fi sequel, but the rumour has now been denied by officials at 20th Century Fox studios.
According to editors at The Hollywood Reporter, a Fox spokesperson stated on Tuesday (17Sep13) that the actor will not be starring in the Avatar follow-up and has not even been considered for a role.
In August (13), Fox bosses announced that screenwriters Josh Friedman, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver and Shane Salerno are collaborating with Cameron on the screenplay for three sequels to the hit 2009 movie.
A continued source of intrigue and fascination, J.D. Salinger died in 2010 at the age of 91. The author is now the subject of a revealing new documentary, Salinger, by director Shane Salerno, who is also the co-author with David Shields of a 700-page biography, published today by Simon & Schuster, also titled Salinger. Little is still known about the author of The Catcher In The Rye's personal life (despite that he harbored an undying love for the word "phony"), and Salinger spent the last 60 years of his life keeping it that way, until now! Here are five facts you might not have already known about the world's most famous literary recluse.
Hulton Archive Collection/Getty ImagesHe Dated Eugene O'Neill's DaughterSalinger fell madly in love with Oona O'Neill, who was 16 when they began dating in 1941, often writing her long, obsessive love letters and calling her at all hours of the day. The relationship never worked out, and Oona eventually married Charlie Chaplin. Salinger, however, who was in his early 20s at the time of their courtship, never stopped lusting over teenage girls. At the age of 53, he began a hot and heavy relationship with an 18-year-old aspiring writer named Joyce Maynard.
He Went HollywoodAlthough he famously refused to authorize film adaptations of his most famous work, back when he was a young struggling writer Salinger sold the film rights to an early short story called "Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut," which became 1949's My Foolish Heart. Perhaps as a sign of what was to come, Salinger later called the film a "bastardization."
He Knew Ernest HemingwayThe young author struck up a friendship with the literary icon as a soldier during the Second World War. Hemingway was working as a war correspondent at the time and upon their initial meeting, referred to Salinger as "a helluva talent."
He Practiced ScientologyA devoted spiritualist throughout most of his adult life, Salinger even tired Dianetics, the precursor to Scientology. He quickly became suspicious of the new religion, however, and eventually abandoned it altogether. Still, he does have the esteemed privilege of being the first celebrity scientologist!
He Was Still WritingAlthough long rumored (yet never confirmed) that he was working on new material during his decades-long seclusion in the woods of New Hampshire, the new Salinger documentary claims that the author left detailed instructions for new works of fiction to be published as early as 2015. One of the new works is said to include several new stories that will add further depth into the life of the Glass family, whose members reappear throughout Salinger's fiction, particularly his later stories.
More:Why Ben Affleck Is Better Behind the Camera5 Career Suicide Movie RolesBen Stiller Is Walking on Sunshine in a New 'The Secret of Walter Mitty' Poster
From Our Partners:40 Most Revealing See-Through Red Carpet Looks (Vh1)15 Stars Share Secrets of their Sex Lives (Celebuzz)
A plane carrying staff associated with a new documentary about writer J.D. Salinger made a crash landing in Colorado on Sunday (01Sep13). Author David Shields, who co-wrote new book Salinger with director Shane Salerno, and The Weinstein Co. publicity executive Emmy Chang were among the passengers left shaken up after the air scare.
The incident happened after the landing gear of the small craft collapsed as it approached Telluride Regional Airport and the plane skidded to a halt on the runway.
There were no injuries to the 10 passengers on board or the two crew members, but all outgoing flights were postponed or cancelled as officials investigated the accident, according to TheWrap.com.
Salinger is being screened at the Telluride Film Festival this weekend (29Aug13-02Sep13).
The documentary, backed by The Weinstein Co., is due out later this month (Sep13) in conjunction with Salerno and Shields' book about The Catcher in the Rye writer.
Unseen stories by iconic writer J.D. Salinger are to be published for the first time, five years after his death, according to an upcoming biopic. The reclusive author achieved legendary status for penning 1951 classic The Catcher in the Rye, but it was the only novel he ever published prior to his death in 2010.
Although he released 13 short stories in addition to his novel, rumours have swirled for years that a secret file of unpublished Salinger works is stored at his home in Cornish, New Hampshire, and now producers of a new movie claim the books are to be released.
The biopic, which is titled Salinger and is due out next month (Sep13) in conjunction with a book about the writer, contains allegations the author left instructions with the executors of his estate to publish five works in 2015.
At least one of the stories is said to feature the character of Holden Caulfield, the infamous anti-hero of The Catcher in the Rye.
Screenwriter Shane Salerno, who has worked on the upcoming movie, tells The New York Times, "He's going to have a second act unlike any writer in history. There's no precedent for this."
The basic premise of most crime revenge dramas is how much of our humanity we're willing to trade to get back what the other people — the ostensible baddies — have taken from us. Oliver Stone returns to this familiar stomping ground with Savages a splashy adaptation of Don Winslow's novel about a unique love affair a major marijuana-dealing business and an increasingly violent pissing match between two SoCal growers and the Baja Cartel.
Stone's frenetic visual style is in full swing but even this Oscar-winning auteur can't quite raise the film from mediocrity. It's hard to care whether or not Ben (Aaron Johnson) and Chon (Taylor Kitsch) rescue their gorgeous mutual girlfriend O (Blake Lively) from the cartel if O isn't engaging enough to persuade us she's worth the bloodshed. O (short for Ophelia — an allusion to her earthshaking climaxes) is not a well-written character to begin with but she's even less engaging as played by Lively. Johnson is unconvincing as the bleeding heart Ben and the details his character is given — extra earrings a shoddy-looking tattoo on his neck even white boy dreads at one point — undercut his believability even more. Kitsch is given a few prominent scars and a mean squint but he doesn't quite bring the weird slightly empty vibe of Chon to life.
On the villain side Benicio Del Toro chews every inch of scenery from Laguna Beach to Tijuana as Lado. He's rocking an intense moustache that he strokes when he's lying or being a creep (which is most of the time) a vaguely mullet-like wig and a fondness for torture. Salma Hayek takes no prisoners as the head of the cartel nicknamed Elena la Reina who is both a frustrated mom whose college-age daughter is blowing her off (aw!) and a brutally tough woman in a man's world. John Travolta definitely enjoys a bit of Pulp Fiction ridiculousness as Dennis a DEA official who's in Ben and Chon's pocket. It's hard to tell just how funny Savages is aiming to be. Lado Elena and Dennis are cartoonish but Ben Chon and O are earnest — which is to say a little bit boring.
The double- and triple-crossing is practically moot as is the wacky technology that Ben and Chon employ; it's like The Social Network meets surfers. The real meat of the movie is the flash and violence but it's not the kind of thing that stays with you like Stone's Natural Born Killers. Savages doesn't have the same lingering aftertaste. It's not that a movie needs to have some sort of message with its pointed commentary on the media's bloodlust but the gist of Savages — that we're all savages at heart or that we can easily become a savage given the right circumstances — is not that interesting or unique.
Oddly enough Savages pulls a few punches when it comes to its source material (hard to believe when the movie kicks off with a glimpse of an abattoir-like enclosure and close-ups of men begging for their lives just as a chainsaw revs in the background). Winslow's book is a quick enjoyable read with an interesting on-page style that's hard to replicate verbally. It has a sort of ADD-addled feel that the movie tries to but doesn't quite capture. While it's not always fair to compare an adaptation to the book it's based on Winslow is both the author and one of the screenplay writers so some of the choices made behind the scenes don't quite add up. Cut are significant and menacing back story for Lado and all of the zestiness out of O. Why add in certain plot points and take out others unless it was to give one of its big name stars more screen time? The most interesting part of the story the love story is treated like a wink wink homoerotic thing than an actual relationship between three people who adore each other which is how it's portrayed in the book. It's hard not to be a little disappointed especially given Stone's no-f**ks-given attitude. (Or as O would say baditude.)
That said it is a somewhat entertaining diversion and a nice tour of lifestyles of the rich and criminal. Lively is all tangled tan limbs and luxurious hippie clothes and the homes they frequent whether on Laguna Beach or a desert compound are meticulously decorated with exquisite expensive taste. Santa Muerte imagery also figures heavily in the background of many scenes. The scenery is gorgeous — even the marijuana looks amazing. It's good for adults to have another R-rated choice in what's usually a season dominated by blockbusters but in years to come you'll more likely to reach for your old True Romance DVD than Savages.
A kids’ movie without the cheeky jokes for adults is like a big juicy BLT without the B… or the T. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted may have a title that sounds like it was made up in a cartoon sequel laboratory but when it comes to serving up laughs just think of the film as a BLT with enough extra bacon to satisfy even the wildest of animals — or even a parent with a gaggle of tots in tow. Yes even with that whole "Afro Circus" nonsense.
It’s not often that we find exhaustively franchised films like the Madagascar set that still work after almost seven years. Despite being spun off into TV shows and Christmas specials in addition to its big screen adventures the series has not only maintained its momentum it has maintained the part we were pleasantly surprised by the first time around: great jokes.
In this third installment of the series – the trilogy-maker if you will – directing duo Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath add Conrad Vernon (director Monsters Vs. Aliens) to the helm as our trusty gang swings back into action. Alex the lion (Ben Stiller) Marty the zebra (Chris Rock) Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith) and Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer) are stuck in Africa after the hullaballoo of Madagascar 2 and they’ll do anything to get back to their beloved New York. Just a hop skip and a jump away in Monte Carlo the penguins are doing their usual greedy schtick but the zoo animals catch up with them just in time to catch the eye of the sinister animal control stickler Captain Dubois (Frances McDormand). And just like that the practically super human captain is chasing them through Monte Carlo and the rest of Europe in hopes of planting Alex’s perfectly coifed lion head on her wall of prized animals.
Luckily for pint-sized viewers Dubois’ terrifying presence is balanced out by her sheer inhuman strength uncanny guiles and Stretch Armstrong flexibility (ah the wonder of cartoons) as well as Alex’s escape plan: the New Yorkers run away with the European circus. While Dubois’ terrifying Doberman-like presence looms over the entire film a sense of levity (which is a word the kiddies might learn from Stiller’s eloquent lion) comes from the plan for salvation in which the circus animals and the zoo animals band together to revamp the circus and catch the eye of a big-time American agent. Sure the pacing throughout the first act is practically nonexistent running like a stampede through the jungle but by the time we're palling around under the big top the film finds its footing.
The visual splendor of the film (and man is there a champion size serving of it) the magnificent danger and suspense is enhanced to great effect by the addition of 3D technology – and not once is there a gratuitous beverage or desperate Crocodile Dundee knife waved in our faces to prove its worth. The caveat is that the soundtrack employs a certain infectious Katy Perry ditty at the height of the 3D spectacular so parents get ready to hear that on repeat until the leaves turn yellow.
But visual delights and adventurous zoo animals aside Madagascar 3’s real strength is in its script. With the addition of Noah Baumbach (Greenberg The Squid and the Whale) to the screenwriting team the script is infused with a heightened level of almost sarcastic gravitas – a welcome addition to the characteristically adult-friendly reference-heavy humor of the other Madagascar films. To bring the script to life Paramount enlisted three more than able actors: Vitaly the Siberian tiger (Bryan Cranston) Gia the Leopard (Jessica Chastain) and Stefano the Italian Sealion (Martin Short). With all three actors draped in European accents it might take viewers a minute to realize that the cantankerous tiger is one and the same as the man who plays an Albuquerque drug lord on Breaking Bad but that makes it that much sweeter to hear him utter slant-curse words like “Bolshevik” with his usual gusto.
Between the laughs the terror of McDormand’s Captain Dubois and the breathtaking virtual European tour the Zoosters’ accidental vacation is one worth taking. Madagascar 3 is by no means an insta-classic but it’s a perfectly suited for your Summer-at-the-movies oasis.
We could be on the verge of witnessing a new powerhouse director/star duo as Hugh Jackman contemplates reuniting with his Real Steel director Shawn Levy on his next film, Fox's remake of Fantastic Voyage. James Cameron is producing the 3D picture and Deadline today reveals that Jackman is the filmmakers first choice to topline the tent pole.
Shane Salerno and Laeta Kalogridis updated the 1966 screenplay and their new version adds a strong love story to the adventure, which follows a team of scientists who are shrunk in size while in a scaled-down ship to save a colleague's life. Though it'll be an ensemble picture, the cast could definitely use a marquee name leader and Jackman, given his relationship with Fox, seems like the perfect fit.
The studio is keen on keeping Jackman on the lot with this project as it tries to fix The Wolverine situation. Jackman is still searching for a filmmaker to take the reigns of the sequel, which was supposed to be in production already for a prime summer 2012 release. Aside from losing director Darren Aronofsky earlier this year, the Japanese disaster has also offset the shoot as the majority of the script is set in the island country. This makes the film's current timetable nearly impossible to keep up with, so Jackman could benefit from working on another major motion picture while his mutant matters get sorted out. Having been to the set of Real Steel last year, I can say that Levy and Jackman have developed a great rapport and looked like they really enjoyed working together, so it comes as no surprise to me that they'd consider a new project together, in addition to a possible Real Steel sequel and the pitch that Carlton Cuse is writing for them to collaborate on.
UPDATE: Variety reports that Emile Hirsch has also joined the production in an undisclosed role. I had actually originally thought that Hirsch would be great in the role of Ben, a part which Aaron Johnson will play, so I don't have any clue as to who he'll portray in the picture now. We'll report back when do.
EARLIER: When Blake Lively was first rumored to be in the running for the role of O in Oliver Stone's Savages, she talked about how actors have always jumped at the chance to work with the Oscar winning auteur. "When you look at directors that you want to work with, he's always on the top of the list," the blond beauty said, and now she's going to. Deadline reports that she's been locked into the part of the pot-smoking and dealing girlfriend of both Taylor Kitsch (as the ex-Navy SEAL Chon) and Aaron Johnson (as the brilliant botanist Ben) in the director's adaptation of the Don Winslow novel.
Stone co-wrote the script with Shane Salerno and will begin principle photography in early July. He's also cast John Travolta as a a burned-out DEA agent and Uma Thurman as O's mother Paqu, joining Salma Hayek as the queen of the Mexican drug cartel that goes after the trio of Laguna marijuana pushers and Benicio del Toro as a ruthless enforcer for the cartel. The source notes that there are several more roles to be cast, but this is already shaping up to be a killer thriller with a great roster. It's already at the top of my hype list for late 2012, when I expect the film to bow.
Universal Pictures is financing and distributing Savages.
Began unpaid internship on the set of "NYPD Blue" (ABC)
Sold "Thunder Blow" to Dino DeLaurentiis for $600,000 and adapted "A Season in Hell" for Steven Spielberg and the newly formed Dreamworks Pictures
Established his own production company, Chasing Time Pictures
Signed a three-year deal with Universal television and producer Dick Wolf to write for "New York Undercover" (Fox); clashed creatively with producers and other writers
Wrote the screenplay for "Aliens vs Predator: Requiem"
Moved to Los Angeles
Executive Produced (also wrote) "UC: Undercover" (NBC)
Created pilot "UC: Undercover" with novelist Don Winslow about a team of undercover agents; pilot greenlighted by NBC
Produced his own documentary for public access "Sundown: The Future of Children and Drugs"
Worked on developing "Bay of Pigs" for director Ving Rhames
Signed with CAA and got out of his TV deal
Assigned to develop action features "A Season in Hell" and "Thunder Blow" with producer Arne Schmidt
Received first feature screenwriting credit for "Armageddon"
Met director Michael Bay and began work on the Jerry Bruckheimer produced "Armageddon"
Met acclaimed "Boyz N The Hood" director John Singleton; co-wrote screenplay for "Shaft" (2000)
Hired to rewrite "Alien vs. Predator" which was released in 2004; never received screen credit
Worked on writing a script with filmmaker and personal idol Michael Mann about the drug trade
Worked on developing two more features, the thriller "Breakdown" and a script about the Zodiac serial killer for Touchstone
A teenager who showed maturity above his years, Salerno was known for donning conservative suits and displaying a reserved and polite manner. Even at this young age, Salerno was determined to get on the fast-track to his dream. During his senior year of high school in San Diego, Salerno wrote, directed and produced the documentary "Sundown: The Future of Children and Drugs." The documentary premiered on Larry King Live in 1991 and received widespread attention and praise.
St. John's College High School
San Dieguito High School
Salerno was voted "Most Likely to be Famous" in high school and was often compared to Alex P. Keaton, Michael J. Fox's character from "Family Ties"
Salerno has stated that he has never smoked, drank or done any drugs in his life
"There is a real difference between arrogance and confidence. For me, if you don't get it right, I don't understand what the point is of doing it. The worst thing you can be is ordinary." - Salerno quoted in The Los Angeles Times, April 7, 2002