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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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.
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