UPDATE: Variety repeats the news, but refers to the film as Out of the Furnace.

Since Crazy Heart became a critical, awards and art-house success, director Scott Cooper has been linked to a few different projects. Jennifer Lawrence was hoping he’d make Lie Down in Darkness, and ask her to star in it. He was an option for the Warner Bros. film Tales From the Gangster Squad, and mentioned as a possible director for The Hatfields and the McCoys.

While some of those projects might still happen (Tales From the Gangster Squad is definitely in the hands of another, however) Relativity has hired him to rewrite the Brad Ingelsby script The Low Dweller, and to direct the film. Read More »

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Currently number two on the New York Times Hardcover Nonfiction Best Seller list, Laura Hillenbrand‘s Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption has been purchased by Universal Pictures as a potential directing gig for Francis Lawrence. The book centers on the true story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who endured terrible trials as a prisoner of war during World War II. They’re hoping that Scott Cooper, who wrote Crazy Heart, will adapt the script. Read more about Zamperini’s story, as well as the half-century tale of this film’s path to the big screen, after the jump. Read More »

The question to ask about the Warner Bros. film Tales From the Gangster Squad might not be ‘who will direct,’ but ‘why didn’t all these other guys want to direct?’ There has been a lot of talk about possible directors, including Ben Affleck and Darren Aronofsky, but the WB film keeps looking for someone to sign on. The two new choices are Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland) and Jose Padilha (Elite Squad), with Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) still hanging on. Read More »

I can’t tell if Tales From the Gangster Squad, based on a series of LA Times articles and intended as an ensemble ‘actor’s piece,’ is as much of a priority at Warner Bros. as news would make it seem, or if the film is just an easy headline. The script details an LAPD squad’s efforts to oppose the incursion of organized crime into the city of LA, and is said to be fantastic.

In the last couple weeks, perhaps motivated by the reception for The Town, the film was offered to Ben Affleck, and yesterday word came down that Warner Bros. lobbed it at Darren Aronofsky. But with Affleck passing and Aronofsky looking likely to take Wolverine 2 (what a strange world) WB reportedly has five more names on a list of possible directors. Read More »

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Crazy Heart director Scott Cooper is considering directing an adaptation of William Styron‘s family drama Lie Down in Darkness. (He’s also looking at The Hatfields and the McCoys.) To the best of our knowledge, he doesn’t have a lead picked at this point, but there is an actress who sounds rather determined to get it: Jennifer Lawrence, who was so good in Winter’s Bone and will soon be in X-Men: First Class. Read More »

brad-pitt-hatfields-mccoys

I don’t know how Brad Pitt really has time to schedule anything of late, but evidently he’s trying to get The Hatfields and the McCoys made at Warner Bros. The film would cover the legendary American family feud, and now has Crazy Heart director Scott Cooper attached to direct. Read More »

slashfilmcast550

crazyheartThe /Filmcast Interview is a series of conversations with actors, directors, and other key figures from the entertainment industry. In this episode, David Chen speaks with Crazy Heart director Scott Cooper about the challenges of being a first-time director, how he achieved the film’s amazing sound design, and Jeff Bridges’ remarkable physical transformation. Crazy Heart is out in limited release today.

Have any questions, comments, or suggestions? Want to be interviewed on the /Filmcast? Feel free to e-mail us at slashfilmcast@gmail.com. You can also call and leave a voicemail at (781) 583-1993.

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CRAZY HEART

When I reported on Crazy Heart in 2008, the film was affiliated with the CMT network, yet drew my interest with a cast that included Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Robert Duval. All of these actors excel in roles steeped in the weathering of life and excess, and this tale of, “a washed-up, alcoholic country singer (Bridges) who gets his life back on track thanks to a reporter-type (Gyllenhaal),” obviously played to those strengths on the surface. The addition to the cast of Colin Farrell, forever in our good graces for In Bruges, made this a must-see no matter what.

Well, here we are in the fourth quarter of ’09 and the performance by Bridges is in the thick of Oscar buzz, drawing early comparisons to Mickey Rourke’s unflinching, redemptive arc in The Wrestler. Furthering this parallel, Crazy Heart is being distributed by Fox Searchlight, the company behind Darren Aronofsky’s comeback favorite; they recently decided to give Heart a limited release next month to qualify for consideration by the Academy. A poster for the film is out and attached below.

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