Richard Curtis is the undisputed king of rom coms. As the writer and director behind films like Love, Actually, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill, he's dedicated career to exploring love and its complications in all facets of life. With this latest film, About Time, he goes in a slightly different direction, by fusing the traditional rom com with time travel and a story about the lifelong relationship between father and son. That son is Tim (Domhnall Gleeson), who finds out from his father (Bill Nighy) that the men in his family have the ability to travel through time. As any good Curtis-ian hero would do, he then uses his power to woo Mary (Rachel McAdams), the love of his life.
We sat down with Curtis to discuss the film, the challenges of casting Gleeson, and why About Time is the perfect film for him to end his directorial career on.
Watch the interview above, and catch About Time in theaters now.
GettyThe makers of Doctor Who are certainly ringing in the changes for the upcoming eighth series of the BBC's sci-fi drama. Alongside a brand new doctor in the shape of The Thick Of It star Peter Capaldi, its first two episodes will be directed by Ben Wheatley, the cult auteur responsible for some of the most twisted and deliciously dark British films of the 21st Century. While the 41-year-old will inevitably be forced to tone down his pitch black sense of humour and fondness for the macabre for teatime audiences, it still seems a certainty that he'll bring back the 'hide behind your sofa' element that has largely been missing in recent years. For the uninitiated, here's a look at his five big-screen ventures.Down TerraceFilmed over just eight days on a shoestring budget of less than ten thousand dollars, Wheatley's lo-fi directorial debut was a Mike Leigh-esque portrayal of a disturbing and dysfunctional family attempting to seek out the rat in their criminal operation. Tense, darkly comic and often brutal, it set the blueprint for his career.Kill ListHowever, Down Terrace looked like a Richard Curtis rom-com compared to its follow-up, a hugely unsettling tale of two former British soldiers-turned-hitmen who accept a kill list which becomes increasingly bizarre. Featuring one of the most baffling and divisive endings in contemporary cinema, it will leave you recoiling in either absolute horror or complete frustration.SightseersThe fact that this violent, if often very funny, road movie about a suburban couple who turn into serial killers while on a caravanning holiday is classed as Wheatley's most light-hearted film tells you everything you need to know about his body of work.U Is For UnearthedThe 21st short to appear in the 2012 horror comedy anthology, The ABCs of Death, Wheatley's contribution was a typically bloody affair filmed from the point of view of a vampire who becomes the hunted rather than the hunter.A Field In EnglandNotable for receiving a cinema, DVD, pay-per-view and national TV premiere all on the same day, A Field In England is Wheatley's most impenetrable film, a black-and-white and avant-garde historical thriller set during the 17th Century English Civil War which resembled an even trippier take on Witchfinder General.
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All modern readers — ranging from those with a taste for the classics to the sort whose libraries are comprised entirely of the New York Times' latest recommendations — know the name Tom Clancy. The literary powerhouse behind so many titles that have taken form on the big screen, Clancy has contributed just as much to contemporary Hollywood as he has to contemporary literature. Tragically, Clancy died on Wednesday morning at age 66, with CNN reporting no known cause for the author's passing.
The Baltimore native's first work is perhaps his most famous as well: The Hunt for Red October, a 1984 novel that introduced his Jack Ryan hero and was brought to life in the form of an esteemed adventure movie six years later. But Clancy has a number of venerable pieces to his name that have also earned cinematic life: Clancy published Patriot Games in '87, Clear and Present Danger in '89, and The Sum of All Fears in '91. A fifth Jack Ryan film, Jack Ryan: Shadow One, is set to hit theaters in December.
In addition to movies, Clancy also inspired many a video game with his stories, the most famous of which being Rainbow Six, which Clancy wrote in 1998. The author showed no signs of slowing down his writing career. Since returning to the craft in 2010, Clancy penned five novels, and has another, Command Authority, due for publication in December 2013.
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September 10, 2009 5:33am EST
As the fall festival season swings into full gear with the opening of the Toronto Film Festival, Venice humming along and Telluride wrapping, another festival is heading into the home stretch on the Normandy shores here in Deauville, France.
Although it gets less media attention outside Europe than those other get-togethers, the Deauville Festival of American Film is an important step on the fall calendar for the US majors and for indie fare that otherwise might not get seen on the continent.
Used as a launching pad into Europe, Deauville showcases high-profile pictures -- The Time Traveler's Wife, Julie & Julia, District 9, The Informant! and Gamer have all already screened -- and US indies, which run in a separate competition.
Although the recession can be felt with a lack of glitzy parties, this has frankly been the case for the past couple of years. Still, the stars turn out to help promote their wares. Last weekend Rachel McAdams, Eric Bana, Meryl Streep, Nora Ephron, and others (Howard Stringer included) delighted fest-goers -- La Streep parle francais! -- by putting in an appearance.
Yesterday, Steven Soderbergh gave a press conference for The Informant!, Robin Wright Penn is here today to promote The Private Lives of Pippa Lee and Harrison Ford (a regular attendee) will be in town this weekend as the festival's guest of honor.
Still, it's a bit quiet as compared to a few years ago when George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon all came to town. Damon for his part, Soderbergh's producer Gregory Jacobs told journalists yesterday, would have been here this year but it was his daughter's first day at a new school and she really wanted him to take her. "As much as he loves Deauville, he loves his daughter more," Jacobs said -- to applause.
Soderbergh was queried by local journalists about The Informant!, but also about his relationship with Damon and Clooney. Although he's worked with Damon on several films, he said he would refer to him as more of a colleague than a friend. "I think he uses the term 'friend' very seriously and so do I. It sounds bad when you say someone famous is your friend, so no, he's not my friend."
Clooney was a different matter, however, "George is my friend, and I'll tell you why -- it's because I've been to his house. Matt has never invited me to his house."
France may be the country of the auteur and a place where navel-gazing about film is a national pastime, but French film journalists, you see, still get kind of giddy in the presence of a famous person -- and especially one who has ties to even more famous people.
After a journalist referenced the notorious shenanigans during the Ocean's shoots and asked, given Damon's participation in both films, about any anecdotes on the Informant set, Soderbergh said the shoot was rather uneventful in those terms.
"George is the real prankster," he said. And Pitt "had better watch his back," he added, talking about one of the Ocean's films on which Pitt had convinced the crew that Clooney insisted upon being referred to as "Mr. Ocean" -- a caprice that made it into the press and apparently drew serious ire from George.
Clooney still hasn't retaliated against Pitt, Soderbergh said, "but he is a very patient man. I asked him if he had something and he said, 'Yeah, I'm working on something.' He will wait 10 years to get him and it will destroy Brad."
Over on the indie side, Richard Linklater was here the other day to present his out-of-competition film Me and Orson Welles and Mira Sorvino visited for Like Dandelion Dust.
In the indie competition, the Paul Giamatti-starrer Cold Souls, Kevin Spacey's turn as a Shrink, Lynn Shelton's close-up on male friendship Humpday and the Woody Harrelson war film The Messenger are among those to have screened thus far.
Miguel Arteta's Youth In Revolt premieres tomorrow followed by Sundance favorite Precious. Andy Garcia will be in town as the subject of a tribute and in support of Raymond De Felitta's City Island.
Luc Besson will also be here on Friday in support of documentary The Cove, which his EuropaCorp is releasing in France. The press-shy filmmaker/mogul will typically forgo a press conference, however.
The awards, which in the past have presaged Oscar nominations with acuity (see Crash, Little Miss Sunshine, The Visitor) will be presented on Sunday.
Full story: http://www.hollywoodwiretap.com/?module=news&action=story&id=40150
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When retired U.S. Special Forces Soldier Chris Vaughn (Johnson) returns to Kipsat County Wash. it's only to find his hometown overrun with crime drugs and violence. The old mill where Chris's father (John Beasley) worked for most of his life is closed and the town's only thriving industry is the Wild Cherry casino. Even Chris' high school sweetie Deni (Ashley Scott) couldn't resist the Wild Cherry's lure; she's become a peepshow dancer to "pay the bills." But Chris really loses it when he discovers the casino's dealers are using loaded dice--and he starts a brawl that ends with the security team carving up his chest and abdomen with a rusty Exacto knife. Chris also learns that that his old high school rival the casino's owner Jay Hamilton (Neal McDonough) has transformed the mill into a crystal meth lab and is using the casino's menacing security staff to sell the drugs to innocent kids. Chris strikes back by running for sheriff firing the entire police department on his first day and with the help of a cedar two-by-four and his deputy and buddy Ray Templeton (Johnny Knoxville) restores peace to the Pacific Northwest.
Johnson looking buffer than ever is well cast in the role of Chris: He's a fearless and determined soldier with beyond-human fighting skills. But while the film takes advantage of Johnson's brawn it fails to take advantage of his brain. In last year's comedy The Rundown Johnson proved he was more than a muscle-bound action star; he oozed charm and was surprisingly witty. With Walking Tall he never gets a chance to flex his acting muscles; if anything they atrophy. The only skills Johnson gets to show off are his ability to swing a plank at someone's shins and his unique way of bashing skulls against slot machines. Johnson's sidekick Ray played by Knoxville of MTV's Jackass fame is an ex-junkie who after spending a couple of years in the slammer is content with living in a camper and doing odd jobs around town. With his scraggly appearance and klutzy demeanor Knoxville supplies the film with brief interludes of humor amid the slam fest including a scene in which he stabs a bad guy with a potato peeler. Johnson and Knoxville would have made a first-rate action team had they had more screen time together.
A WWE production with Vince McMahon serving as executive producer Walking Tall has none of the subtlety of director Kevin Bray's last film All About the Benjamins and all the elements of a wrestling match. As with wrestling the film begins by melodramatically establishing the story (Chris and his family's lives are devastated by the mill's closure) and just like rival pugilists who publicly taunt the favored wrestler Chris challenges Jay--not for the world title but at least for control of Kipsat County--in a never-ending battle between good and evil that mimics wrestling to a T. But what's entertaining in the ring doesn't translate to film especially when the good guy running the town is a maniacal meathead. Chris is supposed to be the protagonist who single-handedly saves the town but who's responding to the citizens' domestic violence calls for example when the sheriff fires the entire precinct and spends 24 hours a day casing the casino? Never mind the fact that he has sex with his girlfriend in his office while he's on the clock.