First Look: Choke Video Clip

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My editor, Peter, has the Chuck Palahniuk adaptation Choke stashed in a lil’ box inside the fridge that is /Film, but he’s givin’ ‘er at Sundance (yep, it’s premiering there), so I’m raiding it. A “Meet the Filmmakers” Sundance Channel video with Choke‘s first-time director, Clark Gregg, can now be seen after the jump.

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First Look: Chuck Palahniuk’s Choke

First Look: Chuck Palahniuk's Choke

David Fincher’s big screen adaptation of Fight Club is one of my favorite films of all time. The book and author behind the book are even better than that. I’ve been waiting for years for Chuck Palahniuk‘s Survivor to become a film. If there were a top 10 list of unadapted novels, Survivor would probably be in the top five, somewhere close to Catcher in the Rye.

The film rights to Palahniuk’s Fight Club follow-up were sold quickly, but the film will likely never be produced. September 11th happened. You see, the protagonist of the novel hijacks a civil airplane with plans to crash it. The book is about much more than that, but the hijacking is a main part of the climax of the story. Chuck recently announced during his most recent book tour that a film adaptation is still in the works, however I’m still very doubtful.

My third favorite Palahniuk novel is probably Choke. If you never want to read Choke, than don’t pick it up in a book store and start reading the first chapter. It might very well be the best opening chapter in terms of sucking you in.

Choke bookIn Clark Gregg‘s directorial debut, Sam Rockwell plays Victor Mancini, who grew up going from one foster home to another after Victor’s mother (played by Angelica Huston) was found to be an unfit mother. Several times throughout his childhood his mother would kidnap him from his foster parents. But they would eventually be caught.

“Victor is now a man in his mid-twenties who left medical school in order to find work to support his mother who is now in a nursing home. He cannot afford the care that his mother is receiving so he resorts to being a con man. His “con” is to go to restaurants and midway through his meal, he forces himself to choke on his food. When some good Samaritan comes over to perform the Heimlich maneuver, he spits the food out and thanks them for saving his life. He keeps a detailed list of everyone who saves him and sends them frequent letters about fictional bills he is unable to pay. The people feel so sorry for him that they give him money, send him cards and letters asking about him how he’s doing, and even continue to send him money to help him with the bills.”

Choke will premiere at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival. The first look photo above shows Victor sitting with his best friend Denny (played by Brad William Henke).

source: Twitch

Choke bookIn May we told you that Sam Rockwell was set to star in a big screen adaptation of Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk’s Choke. Well now it seems official because the trades are reporting the story as fact, and we now have new confirmed details. Angelica Huston will play Victor Mancini’s (Rockwell) mother who is in a private mental hospital.  Kelly Macdonald (No Country for Old Men) and Brad Henke (In the Valley of Elah) also star. Choke will also be the directorial debut of actor Clark Gregg, who also wrote the adaptation. Shooting begins this week in New Jersey.

Chuck Palahniuk is the biggest untapped resource producing books today. His breakthrough novel Fight Club, was made into one of the most brilliant films of the last 10 years. Yet none of his other novels have gone into production since, mostly because Hollywood is afraid to touch them.

I’m glad to see that another one of his books has finally been given a chance. Although, I wish it were Survivor – which was set to go into production before, well, THAT day. You see, Survivor’s main character is a terrorist who hijacks a plane and… yeah, that project is way dead. But it’s definitely my favorite Palahniuk novel (underneath Fight Club, of course).

If you never want to read Choke, than don’t pick it up in a book store and start reading the first chapter. It might very well be the best opening chapter in terms of sucking you in.

    Choke follows Victor Mancini and his friend Denny through a few months of their lives with frequent flashbacks to the days when Victor was a child. Victor grew up while going from one foster home to another. Victor’s mother was found to be unfit to raise Victor. Several times throughout his childhood his mother would kidnap him from his foster parents. They would eventually be caught and he would again be remanded over to the government child welfare agency.

In the present day setting of the book, Victor is now a man in his mid-twenties who left medical school in order to find work to support his mother who is now in a nursing home. He cannot afford the care that his mother is receiving so he resorts to being a con man. His “con” is to go to restaurants and midway through his meal, he forces himself to choke on his food. When some good Samaritan comes over to perform the Heimlich maneuver, he spits the food out and thanks them for saving his life. He keeps a detailed list of everyone who saves him and sends them frequent letters about fictional bills he is unable to pay. The people feel so sorry for him that they give him money, send him cards and letters asking about him how he’s doing, and even continue to send him money to help him with the bills.

The Darjeeling Limited Movie Poster

Update: Apparently the poster is just a creation of NataliePortman.com, and is not real.

One day after the screenplay mysteriously found its way onto the internet, out friends at FilmIck have a first look at the movie poster for Wes Anderson’s The Darjeeling Limited. I love the film’s tagline “She Almost Definitely Changed The World”. It’s very Wes Anderson-ish. Click on the poster for a slightly better view.

Written by Anderson, Roman Coppola and Jason Schwartzman, the story follows the journey of three brothers (played by Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman) who take a train (The Darjeeling Ltd) through India in search of a rare albino tiger that was believed to be the reincarnation of their recently deceased father. The brothers intend the trip as a spiritual journey, a search for the tiger, and a chance to bond with each other. But things go wrong – they get kicked off the train, at which point they begin to learn much more about themselves and the country than they ever expected to. The film also stars Amara Karan, Natalie Portman, and Angelica Huston.

The Darjeeling Limited is scheduled to hit theaters on December 25th 2007.

The Darjeeling Limited

Wes Anderson’s next movie, The Darjeeling Limited is being screened for test audiences right now (a review on AICN has mysteriously disappeared). The film’s screenplay has been leaked onto the internet. We haven’t read it, but we’re hoping it’s better than The Life Aquatic (we enjoyed his last movie but it paled in comparison to his previous efforts). You might want to check out the script over at NataliePortman.com, before it disappears too.

Written by Anderson, Roman Coppola and Jason Schwartzman, the story follows the journey of three brothers (played by Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman) who take a train (The Darjeeling Ltd) through India in search of a rare albino tiger that was believed to be the reincarnation of their recently deceased father. The brothers intend the trip as a spiritual journey, a search for the tiger, and a chance to bond with each other. But things go wrong – they get kicked off the train, at which point they begin to learn much more about themselves and the country than they ever expected to. The film also stars Amara Karan, Natalie Portman, and Angelica Huston.

The Darjeeling Limited is scheduled to hit theaters on December 25th 2007.

Via: DTheater

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