Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures/Screen Gems
We can divide the incoming audience of Kimberly Peirce's Carrie remake into three categories. First, dutiful fans of the original — just about any modern day cinephile, or regular human being who was at least a teenager in the mid-1970s. A collective who might be expecting, based on a passage of four decades and an insightful director like Peirce, something altogether different than Brian De Palma's horror classic. As much as we might have loved the old version, we're not heading to theaters to see it reproduced with Chloë Grace Moretz standing in for Sissy Spacek.
Second, we have the group who never got around to De Palma's Carrie, or at least who do not remember it with any particular fondness, but who hold Stephen King's novel in high regard. A group who might expect the epistolary form of the narrative to translate to screen in some inventive way, telling Carrie White's story the way that King did back in his early days.
Finally, the youngest of the lot: those who never saw, never read, maybe even never heard of Carrie, but who are flocking to theaters out of love for the young Moretz and in hopes of a good scare. These are likely to be the participants most satisfied — although it is the goal to approach every new feature film as a work independent from all predecessors and source material, anyone who has seen the '76 Carrie will have a hard time eviscerating the connotations from his or her head while watching the new venture.
Just shy of a shot-for-shot remake, Peirce's Carrie doesn't come through on many of the progressive tones or innovations than might arise from connotations with the film's director. When the film does deviate, those in the know will wonder why — why the transformation of the Billy Nolan character (played here by Alex Russell, previously by Jon Travolta) from lowly dufus into a criminal mastermind? Why the changes in Carrie's understanding of her classmates' ultimate misdeed (we won't say more, just in case you're in Category 3), or in her scenes at home to follow? To those who can't seem to get De Palma off the mind, it'll be difficult to justify these very few changes... especially in light of the overwhelming presence of his shadow cast by the new movie's decision to operate in such conjunction with everything we saw in the '76 version (even including the comic relief "gettin' ready for prom" scene).
But even those without a Carrie on their shoulders will feel that this film lacks the gravity it intends. The glossy feel of this Hollywood high school robs Carrie White of her desperation, her classmates of their cruelty, and the climax of its authentic severity. The only place where Carrie does knock its powerful material out of the park is with Julianne Moore, whose Margaret White is so impressively chilling, so embedded in darkness and fear that she's genuinely difficult to watch. But in the otherwise "campy" world of this Carrie, Margaret and the third act darkness just feels dreadfully unpleasant, and to no identifiable end.
What is Carrie saying and doing with all this horror? Unhooking itself from the clasps of dramatic weight, genre fun, and cinematic tribute, the film floats freely without much of an identity. Although the material is enough to get you through the movie, and the performances decent enough to at least see where a new life might have been breathed into a more inventive script, you won't leave Carrie without much in the way of answers. Just one big question: "Why did they bother?"
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Channing Tatum's Broadway adaptation of his sexy film Magic Mike is taking shape - Tony Award-winning songwriters Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey have been hired to put the stripper tale to music. The pair, which created the score for hit production Next to Normal, will work with Glee writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who has been recruited to pen the script for the musical, reports Deadline.com.
Tatum has signed on as a producer, alongside his Magic Mike director Steven Soderberg, although casting details have yet to be revealed and it is not yet known if the actor will make his Broadway debut in the play.
He previously expressed his doubts about participating in the stage show, saying, "I'd need a lot of singing classes."
The original Magic Mike film is based on Tatum's real-life experiences as a teen stripper.
Have a big, glitzy idea for a way to repurpose an iconic or cult-fan favorite film? Look no further than Kickstarter: Hollywood's newest answer for, well, everything. If you give a mouse a cookie, pretty soon they're going to want to take over the whole house.
Today's Kickstarter du jour is for American Psycho: the Musical! Based off the novel by Bret Easton Ellis (and the film starring Christian Bale), the song-and-dance version of Patrick Bateman's life of cool '80s gadgetry, business cards, Huey Lewis tunes, and murder is set to take the stage in London this December — but they need us regular folks' help to do it.
According to the show's producer, Jesse Singer, the musical has been a pet project and "a true labor of love" for himself and the rest of the creative team, which includes Glee producer/screenwriter Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (who wrote the book for the musical, and tried very admirably to turn around Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark on Broadway), Spring Awakening and American Idiot composer Duncan Sheik (who also had a string of radio hits in the '90s), and director Rupert Goold (who is no slouch in the British theater world, as he is currently the associate director of the Royal Shakespeare Company). And as we all know, any true labor of love begs — nay, deserves! — some funding. So why not make the people you're making it for also pay for its production? Ticket sales, schmicket sales! More is more is more.
For diehard fans, though, the campaign has some rewards to tickle your fancy. You have the opportunity to take some private yoga classes with Sheik (for $3,500), go out to dinner with some of the creators or Ellis himself, own the keyboard Sheik used to write the music, or even have your name written into the musical (for a mere $8,500!). And all for pennies, really! If you happen to have a ton of pennies lying around, that is.
Kickstarter: Making Hollywood's mediocre ideas come to life since 2013. Thanks a lot, Veronica Mars.
Check out the video for the campaign, below.
Follow Alicia Lutes on Twitter @alicialutes
More:Scott Disick's 'American Psycho' Transformation is CompleteBret Easton Ellis Tries to Apologize to Kathryn Bigelow, Fails MiserablyAll the Insane Things Lindsay Lohan Did on Set of Bret Easton Ellis' 'The Canyons'
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High school. That period of time when everything is always perfect and simple and wraps up neatly with the entire student body having a good-natured laugh at your best friend's attempt to eat a bunch of hamburgers. Wait, that's not right. That's Archie Comics.
High school. That music-backed epic of emotional devastation, riddled with love triangles, student-teacher relationships, and endless opportunities to sway people to become more tolerant via the gift of song. Closer, but still not actually real life. Just Glee.
For most real people, high school lies somewhere in between those two descriptions. It can be miserable and terrifying, sure. But also fun, carefree, and occasionally hamburger-laden. As a matter of fact, the law of mathematics (as instilled in me via a lesson by Miss Grundy) is that the average of these two extreme depictions of high school life must equate to the most authentic portrayal of this era in teenagery ever to hit pop culture. And as not to deprive the world of this majesty, the people behind Glee and Archie have come together to create Archie Meets Glee, a four-part Archie Comics series written by Glee writer/producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa.
In this series, the McKinley High students (Rachel, Finn... I think there are a few others) will cross paths with the Riverdale residents, melding the latter's good-natured hijinks with the former's angsty car crashery to create something that will probably be monumentally strange and, as such, oddly compelling.
For all of their differences, Archie and Glee do share a handful of similarities. Both feature a wide-eyed average joe, consistently ensnared in a love-triangle involving a popular snob and an artistic "good girl."
[Photo Credit: Fox, Florencio Flores Palomo]
Both feature faculty members who spend way too much time with their students.
[Photo Credit: Fox, Archie Comics]
And both feature a dimwitted best friend character who is apparently unaware of how ridiculous the top of his head looks.
[Photo Credit: Fox, Archie Comics]
So really, this might work out just fine... or present colossal warfare for the dominance of these roles. Either way, catch the release in 2013.
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Archie Meets Glee
Glee writer/co-producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is working on a script for a third movie adaptation of the colourful stageshow, according to The Hollywood Reporter - and Gordon-Levitt is reportedly close to signing on as lovestruck hero Seymour.
The film has a history of big-name links - Jack Nicholson appeared in the 1960 version and Steve Martin portrayed a manic dentist in Moranis' 1986 movie, which also featured John Candy, James Belushi and soul legend Levi Stubbs as the voice of man-eating plant Audrey II.
Hats off to you, Glee. You finally realize that music alone does not make a show. Sure, there are programs like American Idol, and Dancing with the Stars, which have had...a following. But you know that it’s just a phase. You’re not falling for it. You’re taking the high road: STORY.
The creators behind this oddly popular Fox series have hired an additional six writers to join their staff of, virtually, three: the creators and executive producers, Ryan Murphy, Ian Brennan and Brad Falchuk.
Glee’s new staff will include Allison Adler (who will also serve as an executive producer), Marti Noxon (writer for Mad Men and Grey’s Anatomy), Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (writer for Big Love and Marvel comics), Matt Hodgson (Eat Pray Love), Michael Hitchcock (a writer/actor you know, but you have no idea from where…think Arrested Development or anything by Christopher Guest), and Ross Maxwell (Running in Traffic).
The most fundamental change to the show will be the addition to a new freshman characters interacting with Glee club, allowing for various stories and relationships to develop between them. The producers have made past claims about beginning to "phase out" some of the older characters, as well, so perhaps this is a signal for a future shift?
In addition, showrunner Murphy expressed his desire to revert back to the style of Glee’s first season. In Season One, a major story arc involving Dianna Agron's character, Quinn, as a pregnant teen was the driving force. Plots branched off from this central storyline, involving the identity of the father and who might become the caretaker of Quinn’s child. It was a teenage soap opera riddled with improbabilities and character behavior that would in reality brand anyone criminally insane. But at least there was a story. The second season lacked this baseline, relying more on the singing of the cast as primary entertainment. There were smaller story arcs, a slew of “Be Yourself” messages, and a repeat of the whole “If we don’t win Nationals, then there’s no reason to live” motif, but nothing as founding as the first season’s pregnancy.
So, I reprise: way to go, Glee. You’re finally going to start valuing substance over style. Story over song. Pride over popularity. Respect over ratings… good luck.
Source: Hollywood Reporter
Apparently there is no medium that Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa can't work in. After making penning plays and writing for Marvel Comics, he began to work in television on HBO's Big Love in 2009 and 2010. Not long after that, he combined two of his interests by writing the book for a revival of It's a Bird, It's a Plane...It's Superman, for the Dallas Theater Center and most recently was tapped to re-work Broadway's plagued Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark. But as of today, he's picked up two projects that will definitely take his career to the next level.
Deadline reports that he's been hired by MGM and Screen Gems to adapt Stephen King's Carrie for an upcoming adaptation. I say "adaptation" and not "remake" because the companies plan on making a film that skews closer to King's original text rather than an update of the classic 1976 Brian De Palma film. I'm a big fan of De Palma's work (especially the early stuff) and believe that there's no possible way for Carrie to be anymore shocking or terrifying than it was in the original film, so I'm a bit wary of this project and always will be even if Aguirre-Sacasa turns in the greatest screenplay ever. However, I'm sure that the scribe will work wonders on his next small screen gig...
The source also notes he's joining team Glee as a co-producer and writer. I actually couldn't be more ecstatic about this. I've watched Glee from day one and have seen its quality dwindle since the beginning. Personally, I put the blame on Ryan Murphy, who seems to rule the writing with an iron fist. Fresh blood is exactly what the program needs to shake things up a bit, and a guy who comes from a background as eclectic as Sacasa's could really turn the tone of the show around and make it edgy and exciting. That's what I hope, at least. As an openly gay man, I'd assume that he's going to focus his energies on the Kurt Hummel/Dave Karofsky storyline, but don't be surprised if you see a lot more pop culture references and comic book geeks showing up in William McKinley High School.
Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark began previews last year (10), but its official launch has been delayed numerous times due to safety issues, accidents and stunt problems. Director Julie Taymor exited in March (11) and the show was recently shut down to allow a new creative team to revamp the production.
U2 stars Bono and The Edge, who created the score, also began working on new music for the show, while the story has been rejigged and many of the stunts changed.
The musical resumes previews on Thursday ahead of an official launch in June (11) and Bono has confirmed many of the show's issues have now been resolved.
He tells the New York Times, "What was great about Turn Off the Dark 1.0 was unusual and rare: magic, a pop-up Pop-Art opera with a bit of rock 'n' roll circus thrown in. What was not right about it was a catalogue of commonplace problems - story knots, bad sound and finally a failure to cohere, meaning that the whole was not greater than the sum of the parts, as wonderful as some of those parts were. If people can't follow the story, then the songs aren't going to get them out of the maze..."
The Edge adds, "We didn't want to rely on the spectacle of the show alone. For Bono and I, the crucial thing was to tell a story that moved people."
Actor Reeve Carney, who plays the superhero, insists the new script "jumps off the page at you", adding, "There's an energy in the company because of having a clear direction, knowing where we're headed and knowing that it's going to be to a greater place."
Playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa adds to USA Today, "What we've done is bring iconic characters from the comic (series) forward more and flesh out their relationships."
The film, which stars the Batman Begins actor as bloodthirsty maniac Patrick Bateman, was based on the best-selling 1991 book by Bret Easton Ellis.
And now American Psycho is set to be brought to life once again - by Big Love writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa who is collaborating on a Broadway musical with lyricist Duncan Sheik.
The production will include popular music from the 1980s, the era in which the story is set, according to Variety.com.