Posted on Wednesday, October 19th, 2011 by Angie Han
Madonna‘s first directorial effort — 2008′s Filth and Wisdom — wasn’t exactly well received, but you don’t get to be a pop icon of her magnitude without thick skin and a lot of persistence. The multihyphenate returned to the director’s chair this year for W.E., a drama consisting of two interlocking tales: one, the very well-known historical romance between Wallis Simpson (Andrea Riseborough) and King Edward VII (James D’Arcy); the other, a contemporary affair between a married New Yorker (Abbie Cornish) and a museum guard (Oscar Isaac). Watch the first trailer after the jump.
If you’re more interested in the typical fall slate of festival entrees than summer’s glut of tentpole action fare, this is a great week. The Toronto International Film Festival announced the first wave of films that will play the fest in September. This is a batch of about 50 titles, which makes up only a small chunk of the programming. Usually TIFF features between two and three hundred films. But these are some of the highest-profile entries.
Below you’ll find rundowns on the new films from George Clooney, Bennett Miller, Jay & Mark Duplass, Todd Solondz, Francis Ford Coppola, Cameron Crowe, Sarah Polley, Fernando Meirelles, Lars von Trier, Marc Forster, Steve McQueen, Alexander Payne, and Lynne Ramsay. No announcement yet of the Midnight Madness programming choices, always some of my faves, but this is a great start. Read More »
After a bit of delay in finding a distributor, Madonna‘s second directorial effort W.E. has a home at The Weinstein Company. Moreover, the Weinsteins plan to release the picture sometime in 2011 — a last-minute calendar addition that could mean one of two things. Either the movie has actual awards potential, or The Weinstein Company needs a movie, now, that can fill some space in November. Read More »
Joseph Fiennes and Eva Green will travel back to Camelot, the Starz series that re-tells the story of King Arthur. Fiennes is Merlin, while Green will be Morgana. Solid casting with both, though I’m not certain that I’ll ever be able to look at an Arthurian film or TV series without having to leap the hurdle of some of Excalibur‘s actors. Nicol Williamson and Helen Mirren are pretty difficult to top as Merlin and Morgana. In this Camelot Jamie Campbell Bower is Arthur, and Tamsin Egerton is Guinevere. [Reuters]
After the break, the great Amy Ryan goes back to HBO and Madonna’s possibly interesting new film finds its last major player. Read More »
Mario Van Peebles is currently directing Curtis Jackson in Things Fall Apart and, based on Jackson’s past thespian efforts, that’s not terribly exciting. But now Ray Liotta is joining the cast, so that’s a positive turn. Jackson is playing “a star football running back…who faces a personal tragedy as well as his own mortality while in his senior year in college.” Liotta will now play his doctor, which will make a nice change from playing intimidating cops and the like, which Liotta gets all too often. [Variety]
After the break, Lone Scherfig (An Education) and Madonna get new talent for their next films. Read More »
Abbie Cornish gave one of last year’s great performances in Bright Star, and was rather overlooked when awards time came around. She has, however, won a better sort of recognition for a good performance: more work. The actress will appear in Neil Burger‘s Dark Fields, and in W.E., the sophomore directorial effort from Madonna. Read More »
Editors Update: Warner Bros has contacted us and assures us that the reshoots claim is completely “untrue”. The original story can still be read below.
Two new rumors allow contrasting voyeuristic peeks into the divergent careers of Guy Ritchie and Madonna or, for those of us who don’t subscribe to Heat or People Magazine, constitute a double hit of talking points that take in both New Moon and Sherlock Holmes.
A wisp of gossip began circulating yesterday that acclaimed actress and popular movie star Madonna Ciccone was going to appear in the Twilight Sequel, New Moon. I imagine what purchase this tall story might have taken upon the internet is seeded in the circumstance of Madonna’s manager Guy Oseary having a role as a producer on the film. Unsurprisingly, EW’s Hollywood Insider quickly got a denial from Summit Entertainment – but there was an extra twist.
IFC Films has released the trailer for Madonna‘s directorial debut, Filth And Wisdom. The official plot synopsis describes the film as “a hilariously sexy tale of three roommates who must delve into mischievous and naughty behavior in pursuit of bigger and brighter futures.”
“A Ukrainian immigrant, A.K. (Eugene Hutz), finances his dreams of ‘trans-continental superstardom’ with his band, Gogol Bordello, by turning tricks as a role-playing cross dresser. As A.K. literally whips the privileged of London into shape, he also secretly pines for the object of his affection, Holly (Holly Weston), an aspiring ballerina looking for her big break while moonlighting as a slippery stripper. Meanwhile, Juliette (Vicky Mclure) steals medicine from her pharmaceutical job in hopes of quenching her dreams of helping Africa’s youth. FILTH AND WISDOM is every bit as erotic and playful as it is poignant and touching, revealing the universal struggles we all face in our pursuits of happiness.”
This 80-minute film began as a half-hour short, and somehow grew and grew. The movie is already beginning to rack up mixed reviews. Emanuel Levy calls the film “too pretentious and structurally messy to exert any real impact”, while Screendaily calls it “no better or worse than the average creaky low-budget Britflick.” Tell me what you think in the comments below.
Filth And Wisdom hits theaters starting on October 17th 2008. Check IFC to see the full listings of theaters and release dates.