Woody Allen is notoriously shy about naming his movies, typically only doing so after writing the script, and sometimes picking a name far later in the process, like when the film has been shot. He has lately been prepping a film that will shoot in Rome this year, with a cast that includes Jesse Eisenberg, Penelope Cruz, Ellen Page and Alec Baldwin.

Now in an interview with Le Journal du dimanche, the director appears to say the name of the film is The Wrong Picture. That could be a working title, and we’re waiting for confirmation. No plot details accompanied that revelation, but that is also standard operating procedure for the guy. What can we glean about the new film from the title? Not a whole lot at this point, but if he’s letting the name slip now expect to hear more casting soon.

After the break, the Emma Roberts Sundance film Homework gets a new title. Read More »

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Sundance Invades The Summer of 2011

Everyone’s talked ad nauseam about how the summer of 2011 is going to be a blockbuster bloodbath. Week after week of high concept, big budget sequels featuring superheroes, robots and wizards. But those aren’t the only movies that’ll be playing at your local theater during the long, hot months of May, June, July and August. A huge chunk of movies we reviewed in January at the Sundance Film Festival – from award winners to our personal favorites – are also finding their way into theaters during that time. As the heat quickly approaches, we’ve decided to highlight over 20 Sundance films that are scheduled to open opposite the traditional Hollywood fare. See images, read reviews and find release dates all below. Read More »

If you’ve been reading this site for any regular period of time, you know that I’m a sucker for coming of age films — especially the brand of indie romdrams that usually play at the Sundance Film Festival. Gavin Wiesen’s feature directorial debut Homework premiered this week at the festival, and quickly sold to Fox Searchlight (my indie mini-major of choice).

Homework tells the story of George (played by former child star Freddie Highmore), a lonely underachieving teen who is about to fail high school in the end of his senior year. He is befriended by his crush, a girl named Sally, but he is unable to express his feelings for her. His parents are fighting, and he must complete a year’s worth of homework in a two week period or face expulsion.

And did I mention that the story is set in New York City and indie it girl Emma Roberts plays the romantic interest? Sounds like your typical Sundance coming of age romantic drama… and it is.

Read More »

The last couple years at festivals have seen a lot of hand-wringing and commentary about how sales were slow. But Sundance 2011 seems to be a lively marketplace, with big films quickly snapped up by distributors. (Even if they’re mostly films with great press or known casts that are easily marketed.) The big news has been Kevin Smith‘s self-distro plan for Red State, while Margin Call and Like Crazy found early buyers. Several more big sales have been made since then.

After the break, a rundown of sales over the last twelve hours, which includes sales for early festival fave Martha Marcy May Marlene and the comedy My Idiot Brother. Read More »

The announcement of the movies playing the 2011 Sundance Film Festival is like looking into our film futures. It’s December and most movie fans are looking back at the last 12 months, picking out award winners, writing top ten lists, and chances are we haven’t even heard of the Sundance films. They’re just titles, people, words on a computer screen. Then in January they unspool on screens across Park City, Utah and become something more. Finally, months later, these are the movies we discuss with our friends and choose on ballots at awards parties. Yet we get to read about them now, a year in advance.

Last year at this time, who had heard of Four Lions, Catfish, Exit Through The Gift Shop, Blue Valentine, The Kids Are All Right, Winter’s Bone, Restrepo or Animal Kingdom? Sundance, that’s who. All those films screened at the 2010 festival and now many have become not only personal favorites, but critical darlings and award contenders too.

Wednesday, Sundance announced the 58 films eligible for awards in four categories that will play the 2011 festival, taking place January 20-30. The 57 out-of-competition films in six additional categories will be announced Thursday. After the jump, we’ll give you the full list as well as highlight five in each category that sound particular promising. Read More »

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The ‘special forces soldier versus Mexican gangs’ action film Protection has gone through a lot of changes. Originally to be directed by Simon West, the film got a new director in District 13: Ultimatum helmer Patrick Alessandrin. Paul Walker was originally the lead, then he was replaced by Clive Owen. Now the film has a new lead and needs a new director.

Dwayne Johnson is now attached to star in Protection, and Allessandrin has left the project, with no one yet replacing him. Brandon Noonan‘s script is still in play; it follows ” a disgraced former Special Forces soldier who takes on a Mexican cartel in an attempt to rescue and protect a judge’s 21 year-old daughter, who has been targeted by the cartel for agreeing to testify against one of its members after she witnesses her father’s murder.” Given all the movement on this one, it’s hard to believe we’ll see it any time soon, but I wouldn’t mind seeing Johnson do an actual action movie for a change. [The Wrap]

After the break, a host of actors for Goodnight Moon (not based on the kids’ bedtime book) and Emma Roberts does Homework. Read More »

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