HBO has developed quite a reputation for attracting high-profile, high-quality talent, with the likes of Steve Buscemi and Dustin Hoffman leading shows on the network, and now they’ve brought on one of their biggest names yet. Ben Stiller has signed on to star, direct, and executive produce All Talk, a comedy from Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close novelist Jonathan Safran Foer, with Alan Alda in talks to co-star. Scott Rudin is set to executive produce with Foer, Stiller, and Eli Bush. More details after the jump.

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With David Fincher doing a lot of interviews for The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo over the past few days, there is a good amount of talk out there about the possible second and third films that could follow Dragon Tattoo. David Fincher doesn’t yet know if he’ll direct those films — or he isn’t yet saying, at least. That’s something that likely won’t be announced until after the film has its first opening weekend, which is coming up in a couple days.

Whether or not those films happen, there are quite a few other projects in Fincher’s queue. Some are movies he might direct, like the Cleopatra film that would star Angelina Jolie, and the pilot for the Netflix series House of Cards. He’s also got 20,0000 Leagues Under the Sea on the docket, and he’s still working as a producer on films like Black Hole (based on the Charles Burns graphic novel, not the Disney sci-fi film) and The Goon. He has offered slight updates on all those projects in the past couple days, and we’ve rounded up his quotes below. Read More »

In the decade since producer Scott Rudin snapped up the rights to Michael Chabon‘s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, the project’s seen Sydney Pollack and Jude Law come and go, and Tobey Maguire, Jamie Bell, Natalie Portman, Andrew Garfield, and Ryan Gosling all floated as potential stars — but in truth, we’re no closer to seeing a big-screen adaptation now than we were back in 2000. If director Stephen Daldry has his way, though, we may just be getting a small-screen version of it. Specifically, an HBO miniseries version of it. Well, maybe.

Set mostly in ’30s and ’40s New York, Chabon’s book follows the lives of two cousins — Brooklynite Sam Clay and Czech refugee Joe Kavalier — who find fame and fortune in the Golden Age of the comic book industry. More on Daldry’s ideas for the property after the jump.

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Hollywood’s had a long history with botched adaptations of beloved novels, but from here it looks like fans of Jonathan Franzen‘s acclaimed book The Corrections have nothing to worry about. After years of attempting to bring the story to the big screen, producer Scott Rudin eventually turned to HBO — and things have been shaping up nicely from there.

The Squid and the Whale writer-director Noah Baumbach signed on to helm and (with Franzen) pen the drama pilot earlier this fall, while Chris Cooper and Dianne Wiest joined the project several weeks later. Now Ewan McGregor has boarded the series as well, in the role of Cooper and Wiest’s screwup middle child. More details after the jump.

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This past spring Mark Ruffalo said that he was looking at a role in Red Light Winter, a film based on the play of the same name by Adam Rapp (The L Word, Winter Passing), and a movie that would be brought into the world by Scott Rudin, the producer whose taste tends more genuinely toward the literary than almost anyone else working in the US right now.

Ruffalo told The Playlist “it’s the story of a writer and his best friend, and a kind of crazy love triangle they get into,” and more specifically the play is about two thirty-something friends who fall for the same prostitute in Amsterdam. Ruffalo and Billy Crudup play the friends, and now Kirsten Dunst will be their shared obsession. Read More »

Though the small screen retains an unfair reputation as a lesser medium — think of all the snobby types who’ll brag about not owning a television, but would never be so dismissive about books or movies — the truth is that the medium varies as much as any other. Today’s TV Bits runs the gamut from highbrow (a literary adaptation on HBO) to lowbrow (a modeling industry reality show on The CW), with plenty of stuff in between. After the jump:

  • Noah Baumbach’s Jonathan Franzen adaptation The Corrections is a go at HBO
  • HBO will offer an early look at its highly anticipated Luck next month
  • Fox puts new eps of Alcatraz on hold while it goes back for reshoots
  • Burt Reynolds signs on to guest star on FX’s Archer
  • Summer Glau joins Tricia Helfer on TNT’s Scent of the Missing
  • The CW announces start dates for its midseason shows

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Last month, I got very excited about reports that Noah Baumbach would be adapting The Corrections for HBO. The Squid and the Whale director struck me as a perfect pick to bring Jonathan Franzen‘s unhappy family tome to life. Today’s news makes me even more certain that HBO will do right by Franzen. The project, which is being directed by Baumbach and penned by Baumbach and Franzen, has now moved into casting — and the first two choices seem like truly fantastic ones.

Dianne Wiest has signed on to play the part of put-upon wife Enid, while Chris Cooper has entered talks to play her husband Alfred, who suffers from Parkinson’s disease. More details after the jump.

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Whenever an existing property gets optioned for a new show or series, fans are left to hold their breaths and hope that the adaptation does the source material justice. If rumors of Noah Baumbach signing on for a TV adaptation of Jonathan Franzen‘s award-winning The Corrections is true, I’m guessing Franzen’s fans have nothing to worry about. After all, who could be better suited to bring Franzen’s disenchanted suburban family to life than the guy who directed The Squid and the Whale, Margot at the Wedding, and Greenberg?

To add icing on the cake, rumors also suggest that Donald Sutherland and Anthony Hopkins are among the actors eyeing a role in the project. Scott Rudin, who optioned the film rights to the novel a decade ago, is reportedly attached to executive produce. Read more after the jump.

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