When I last mentioned AMC, Robert Kirkman and Frank Darabont‘s The Walking Dead, it looked like Johnny Lee Miller was the favourite for the lead role. Now, whatever goes on behind the scenes went on and it seems that, in lieu of Mr. Miller, the production has plumped instead for Andrew Lincoln. Two groups of people this is very good news for: fans of Andrew Lincoln and viewers of The Walking Dead.
Lincoln’s breakthorugh here in the UK was in a show called This Life that I thought was a touch overrated if very well cast. He then went on to headline Teachers, a snappier, lighter confection and tall-tale spookfest Afterlife, both of which benefited hugely from his performance.
Here’s Robert Kirkman, quoted from THR:
Andrew Lincoln, wow – what an amazing find this guy is. Writing Rick Grimes month after month in the comic series, I had no idea he was an actual living breathing human being and yet here he is. I couldn’t be more thrilled with how this show is coming together.
One of my favourite screenwriters at work today is Peter Hedges. He’s a master of light-touch characterisation and sweetly woven plotline, and in the two films he’s directed as well as scripted, he’s shown that his eye for acutely telling detail and clear storytelling can be manifest visually as well as on the page.
His first novel, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, was adapted into a feature film, with Hedges himself behind the typewriter and Lasse Halstrom behind the camera, though as yet his second novel, An Ocean in Iowa, has not made it to the silver screen. Today we learn that Hedges himself is going to script and direct a movie adaptation of his third and latest novel, The Heights.
The novel is about a couple living in Brooklyn Heights who become involved with a very affluent new neighbour and find their lives up-ended. It has earned comparisons to both Tom Perotta and Jonathan Tropper. There’s some slightly more spoilery details after the break, as well as a video of Hedges discussing his original novel, and a tiny scrap of evidence that points towards maybe-possibly casting.
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Dante Harper‘s film CV is a varied one: editing a documentary about Static-X; directing and acting in the surrealist black comedy The Delicate Art of the Rifle; a small mountain of production manager credits, very often on DVD supplements; a little role in The Onion Movie; scripting an adaptation of Charles Burns’ Black Hole. Add to this the not insignificant pay day he’s just scored for a spec-script adaptation of the Japanese novel All You Need is Kill. He certainly gets around, and I’m sure he’s destined for full-on cult status with a resume like that.
All You Need is Kill is a hideously Engrishy-y title, don’t you think? Hiroshi Sakurazaka’s original novel, published in English by the Manga-maestros at Viz, is about a young soldier sent out to fight an alien menace. When he gets killed in action, a time loop repeats the day, and he fights and dies again. And again. And again. Run, Soldier Run! This concept has been compared to Groundhog Day, of course, but to my mind the most obvious similarities in this case are to a video game. Especially as the soldier finds his combat skills increasing, slowly and subtly, in each iteration.
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He’s had experience with aliens, and he’s turned up in the Old West before, but never at the same time. It could be time to pull one ridiculous fanboy daydream into reality, as it seems like Harrison Ford might well be joining the cast of Cowboys and Aliens.
In case you haven’t been keeping up, this is the Jon Favreau picture with a script by Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci and Damon Lindelof, initially expected to star Robert Downey Jr. but now cast with Daniel Craig and Olivia Wilde and expected to open on July 29th 2011 (or June 24th, according to some doubtful types). What’s it about? Cowboys and aliens. Of course. And adapted from the comic book of the same name . Again, as expected. Oh, and to continue being obvious, the film ‘might’ be shot in 3D.
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While attending Christopher Nolan‘s Inception panel, /Film’s own Peter Sciretta was given a ticket for some Warner Bros swag which included a mysterious t-shirt. The full size image is lurking beyond the break.
The back of the shirt features a QR code that I assume will play some part in upcoming viral activity.
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Geoffrey Fletcher‘s screenplay for Precious has won awards from The Academy, Independent Spirit, NAACP, AAFC, Black Reel and more. It would seem he’s also being rewarded with a pair of cracking leads for his upcoming directorial debut.
Violet and Daisy is described as “Thelma and Louise meets Superbad and Pulp Fiction“. What does that mean? I’m guessing violence, swearing, perhaps revenge and a road movie element? Reportedly in the frame for the lead roles are Carey Mulligan and Saoirse Ronan, though which is more a Violet and which a Daisy, I couldn’t guess.
The news comes from Showbiz 411, reporting the talk at “an elegant congratulatory party for Fletcher”. They’re careful to note that the film “may get a start this summer with two Oscar nominated actresses in the lead roles” and isn’t yet set in stone.
Brian Henson is out promoting Stuffed and Unstrung, formerly Puppet Up!, the live adults-only puppet improv show with undeniably Muppety stars. Of course, they can’t call them Muppets – the name now belongs to Disney – but there’s a recognisable style, and quality, to every foam face the Henson craftsmen make. If you want to know more about Stuffed and Unstrung, there’s a nifty video ad embedded below the break.
During his promotional interviews, Henson has also been pressed to discuss the in-development Muppet Man, a fictionalised biopic of his father Jim that we’ve written about a few times before, as well as a The Happytime Murders, a balls-out comedy” that’s also “a gritty crime thriller and a satire of the genre”.
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Coming to you weekly from my vantage point in good old Blighty, it’s Slashfilm UK. Anglos and Anglophiles rejoice as every Friday I’ll be bringing you a round up news, links and coverage specific to the motion picture comings and goings here in the UK. Sometimes we’ll be talking about films that have already played in the US, other times it will be films that won’t make it to the US for a good while yet, and from time to time you’ll read about films that will never make it to the US at all.
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Cool Posts From Around the Web:
I’m going to let a couple of pictures do most of the speaking for me here. I’ve popped them below the break because I appreciate a lot of readers won’t want anything even mildly spoiler-ish in their path. The pictures show what is, apparently, a new Decepticon from Transformers 3.
Before we jump over to that, though, here’s another Transformers tidbit from Production Weekly. They have today tweeted:
A pre-vis scene for Transformers 3 will shoot at the Majestic Star Casino in Gary, Indiana on April 12th.
A pre-vis scene? Perhaps they’re referring to background plates for CG overlays later?
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I love Fast Times at Ridgemont High and I like Clueless plenty too, but pretty much every other Amy Heckerling picture has failed to click with me – and her last movie I Could Never Be Your Woman almost broke me. I remember when I was 16 and I shuffled off to see Look Who’s Talking and actually thought that because the Fast Times woman had directed it, things were going to work out a whole lot better than the trailer suggested. So, when I hear today that Look Who’s Talking is getting remade, I can’t manage anything more than a shrug.
Is it even a good idea? Talking babies that don’t actually talk? Or will they talk now, seeing as the CG revolution has turned cinema FX on their head in the 20 years since the first Look?
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