At this point I’d be lying if I claimed I knew what to expect from the live-action version of Akira that Jaume Collet-Serra will direct early next year. The film is budgeted in the $90m range — not a lot to create a post-apocalypse future version of Manhattan in which motorcycle gangs do battle as a precursor to psychically-powered mayhem. We know that Garrett Hedlund is playing Kaneda, a biker gang leader whose brother, Tetsuo, is wounded and finds his own psychic power awakened, leading to madness.

We don’t know who will play Tetsuo, but a new list of actors testing for the role includes surprising names like Michael Pitt, Alden Ehrenreich and Paul Dano. Read More »


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Way back in late 2010, we reported on the potential casting of Bradley Cooper in the lead role for David O. Russell‘s The Silver Linings Playbook. At some point, however, Mark Wahlberg emerged as the star of the film, and Cooper was no longer associated with the project. Now, it’s looking like we’re back to square one, with Wahlberg out and Cooper back in. Wahlberg has dropped out of the film due to a scheduling conflict with a different project (possibly Broken City with Allen Huges), and Cooper is currently in talks to replace him.

Also in talks for the movie is Robert De Niro, who met with Russell earlier this summer regarding an unnamed part. Jennifer Lawrence is still set to co-star as the main character’s love interest. Based on a novel by Matthew Quick, the film follows a former high school teacher (that’d be Coopers part) who’s just been released from a four-year stint at a mental institution into the care of his mother. [Deadline]

After the jump: Reese Witherspoon teams up with Disney, Alden Ehrenreich joins Stoker, and Doctor Who star Karen Gillan nabs an indie romance.

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I don’t know what I was expecting from Twixt, but this wasn’t quite it. Francis Ford Coppola‘s latest film (formerly Twixt Now and Sunrise) is a gothic thriller of a sort, but one inspired by Hawthorne and Poe, filmed partly in 3D and featuring a soundtrack by analog knob-tweaking electronic musician Dan Deacon.

The film will be previewed at Comic Con later this week — the director’s first visit to the San Diego event since 1991 — and now we’ve got the first image. The on-set snap features, obviously, Mr. Coppola, and also Elle Fanning in costume and makeup seemingly inspired by Delirium from Sandman. See a slightly larger version below. Read More »

While it’s not that unusual for big-name directors to do commercial work on the side, there seems to be something about fragrance ads in particular that really draws them in. (“Bucketloads of money” is definitely part of it.) A new ad for the Miss Dior Cherie fragrance has premiered online, directed by Sofia Coppola and starring “brand ambassador” Natalie Portman. It looks like typical perfume ad stuff, with Portman lounging around attractively and making out with Tetro star Alden Ehrenreich and generally acting in a manner that only a person in a fragrance commercial would act — but it is pretty. Watch it after the jump.

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I was elated recently to hear that Francis Ford Coppola has quietly gone into production on a new film called Twixt Now and Sunrise. I was elated less at the title and more at the fact that (a) the legendary director keeps on keepin’ on and (b) he’s got Val Kilmer as a lead and (c) Twixt is a sort of genre picture.

Now, thanks to a statement from the director, we know that the film relies upon some “gothic romance/horror subject matter” and that it has additional names in the cast: Ben Chaplin, David Paymer and Tetro‘s Alden Ehrenreich, among others. Read More »

Spider-Man Screen Tests Under Review at Sony


This is a pretty small update to the story about the casting of Sony’s upcoming Spider-Man, to be directed in 3D by Marc Webb. We’ve had one major leaked actor shortlist, which was later augmented with a couple more names. And despite rumors that Sony liked any given actor over the others, the casting process is ongoing.

A new report says that Sony has shot screen tests with most of the names on the list, and is still working with Webb to choose a lead so that the rest of the film can be cast around him. Read More »

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Since Sony announced a reboot of the Spider-Man franchise, the big question has been: who will play Peter Parker and Spider-Man? Quite a few names have come up, but Sony has denied almost all, and evaded the issue as much as possible. Now a new shortlist has been uncovered, and it features a couple expected names, and a few surprising ones. Read More »

The movie trailer for Francis Ford Coppola‘s Tetro is now online. Coppola’s second film in the last 12 years, his first original screenplay since The Conversation, and is the movie is being billed as his most personal film yet. Based from memories and emotions from his early life, though totally fictional, Tetro is the “bittersweet story of two brothers, of family lost and found and the conflicts and secrets within a highly creative Argentine-Italian family.”

Judging from the trailer, Tetro looks and feels like a film from 60 years ago. The black and white cinematography is absolutely gorgeous. Could Tetro be a return to form for Coppola? I really hope so. Watch the trailer after the jump, and leave your thoughts in the comments below.
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Having apparently dropped out of Dario Argento’s giallo Giallo because he was disgusted that the director cast his daughter in the film and there after announced his retirement, actor and socialite Vincent Gallo is now set to star as the title character in Francis Ford Coppola‘s Tetro. Maybe cockiness gets you somewhere in life after all. Also set to star in the film are Oscar winner Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men) as a literary critic and Maribel Verdu (Pan’s Labyrinth) as Gallo/Tetro’s love interest. Intriguing cast to say the least.

The film is reportedly a familial epic set in Buenos Aires, Argentina and will follow actor Alden Ehrenreich, who’s done TV work on CSI, as a younger brother searching for his older brother, Tetro. The brothers belong to a long family history filled with back-stabbing and egos runs amok. At one time, Gallo’s role was rumored to be played by actor Matt Dillon, who worked with Coppola on 1983’s rather cool gang movie Rumble Fish. This is quite an interesting replacement, one that will definitely change the feel of the movie, such is Gallo’s crazy-eyed intensity.

Coppola’s film is set for release in 2009, and it’s another relatively low budget affair, set at $15 million, after his last outing, Youth Without Youth, which received rather savage reviews and toxic word of mouth. I didn’t see it, but it’s on the list. And maybe it’s just me, but there seems to be a little post-release upswing buzz for the film now.

Okay, can’t resist. Here’s the quote Gallo gave announcing that he wanted to leave Argento’s film (it’s worth noting that he was engaged to Asia Argento in 1998)…

“After they cast Asia Argento, I’ve been trying to get out of it. I’d rather not be in a movie with her. I’m not a fan. I was a fan of her father’s. I’m retiring.”

Discuss: Vincent Gallo working with Francis Ford Coppola. Do you care? And is the end near?

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