The other day we learned director Michael Mann is working on a prequel to Heat, which shocked quite a few of the director’s fans. Under Mann’s new venture, Michael Mann Books, the prequel will begin as a novel, and possibly be adapted into a film or television series. Just two days after that announcement, another project from Michael Mann Books is in the works: author Don Winslow (Savages) is writing a novel about Chicago crime boss Tony Accardo and his successor Sam Giancana, which Mann might adapt into a feature film.
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It’s a thrill to see William Friedkin developing new projects. He’s got his hands in a TV show based on his own film To Live and Die in L.A., and now he’s moving forward with a film based on Don Winslow‘s novel The Winter of Frankie Machine, about a retired mob killer with a new life as a low-key seaside entrepreneur who is drawn back into mob violence.
This one has been percolating for a few years, with a number of different directors attached. With new heat on Winslow thanks to his recent novel The Cartel, it’s no wonder this one is moving forward again. Read More »
Ridley Scott may go back to the drug trade at some point in the future. The director explored some ugly inevitabilities of the drug trade in The Counselor, and now he is signed to make a film based on Don Winslow‘s recent novel The Cartel.
The novel, which follows ten years’ worth of the diverging paths of two former friends, one in the DEA and the other in a drug cartel, is based in part on the story of Cartel boss Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who has made global headlines since escaping from a Mexican prison earlier this month. While The Cartel won’t quite be an El Chapo movie, but it might be close.
Update: Following the initial report about this project, further info emerged saying that Leonardo DiCaprio is being courted to play the character Keller. More below.
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Think back to the Oliver Stone films of the 1990s. Not so much JFK and Nixon; more like U-Turn, Natural Born Killers and Any Given Sunday. Those films had a stylized, hyper-saturated color palette that clearly gave Tony Scott some ideas. For instance, on U-Turn, Stone’s cinematographer Robert Richardson shot on reversal film stock — which becomes a transparent positive when developed, rather than a traditional negative — and then cross-processed it as negative film, increasing contrast and color saturation. Tony Scott and Daniel Mindel used the same technique for Domino almost a decade later.
Point is, Stone seems to have gone back to that exaggerated look for his new film Savages, which adapts Don Winslow‘s novel about two small-time pot dealers (Aaron Johnson, Taylor Kitsch) whose mutual girlfriend (Blake Lively) is kidnapped in an attempt to strong-arm them into working with a Mexican drug cartel, which counts Salma Hayek and Benicio Del Toro amongst its members. John Travolta is also in the film; Stone borrowed him from Tony Scott.
If you saw the first poster for the film when Pete ran it in Page 2 yesterday you’ll know something about the look Stone is going for. But now there is a brief montage of footage showing off that stylish, colorful look the director first relied on almost 20 years ago. I have to say, I like it quite a bit. Read More »
Would you like to see Leonardo DiCaprio playing a WWII-era character raised in Japan, trained as an assassin and playing a part in the political power games of the early ’50s? Warner Bros. is thinking you might, and so the studio is developing a film based on Don Winslow‘s novel Satori, which features exactly that sort of character. Read More »
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Posted on Wednesday, June 29th, 2011 by Angie Han
Scarlett Johansson may seem like an unlikely lead for a Judd Apatow film, but in this context her casting actually makes a lot of sense. Johansson has signed on to star in Can a Song Save Your Life?, which will be written and directed by John Carney (Once) and produced by Apatow. The film follows “a washed-up A&R man who forms a passionate bond with a young singer-songwriter (Johansson) from out of town.”
The project calls for Johansson to sing, which shouldn’t be a problem for the actress. Johansson is in fact a professional singer, having released an album of Tom Waits covers titled Anywhere I Lay My Head back in 2008 and a collaboration with Pete Yorn called Break Up in 2009. Though the male lead has yet to be cast, Mark Ruffalo and Jim Carrey have been rumored as possibilities. (FWIW, I vote Ruffalo.) Shooting on the film will begin in New York City next year. [The Playlist]
After the jump, new gigs for the stars of Twilight, Wizards of Waverly Place, and the late-’90s/early-’00s teen alien show Roswell. Gosh, remember that?
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We had a couple of days where mid-level casting for a lot of projects was going crazy. Maybe there was something in the air; maybe casting directors and agents just all got together and had a field day. It’s been a bit slower today, but still there are a couple of items to catch up on. After the break, you’ll find info on how:
- Robin Williams appears to be cast in Gently Down the Stream, with Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon.
- Joel David Moore (Avatar) will be in Oliver Stone’s Savages.
- and Katie Cassidy takes the lead in Freaky Deaky. Read More »
From Weeds to weed — Demian Bichir is making the move into Oliver Stone‘s world. The director is making Savages, based on the book by Don Winslow. He already has quite the cast lined up: Taylor Kitsch and Aaron Johnson play up and coming pot dealers coerced into working for a drug cartel when their girlfriend O (Blake Lively) is kidnapped. John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Emile Hirsch, Salma Hayek and Benicio Del Toro are all in the cast, and now Demian Bichir has signed on, too. Read More »
At this time last year, the name Jennifer Lawrence meant very little to casting directors in Hollywood. Now she has an Oscar-nomination under her belt, is about to be a super hero and is set to top line an Oliver Stone movie. Lawrence is in final talks to star in Savages, based on a critically-acclaimed book by Don Winslow that was previously announced to be directed by Stone. She’ll play Ophelia, the simultanious-girlfriend of two marijuana dealers who get caught up in some serious personal and financial trouble. Stone hopes to shoot the film in June and is looking at several A-list actors to play the drug dealers including Leonardo DiCaprio, Aaron Johnson, Tom Hardy, James Franco and Garrett Hedlund. Read more about the project after the break. Read More »