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What is it with HBO and dramatic recreations of classic documentaries? Last year there was Grey Gardens, and now the network is lining up Cinema Verite, which will be a dramatized behind the scenes take on the 1973 PBS doc An American Family. The original series was a big deal; it frankly portrayed family troubles for the first time on television, and one of the family sons was the first openly gay character/personality on American television.

Cinema Verite is written by David Seltzer, with Tim Robbins and Diane Lane set to play parents Bill and Pat Loud; James Gandolfini will play An American Family producer Craig Gilbert. Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini (American Splendor) are directing, which automatically makes the endeavor a bit more interesting.  [THR]

After the break, Toni Collette will work again with her Muriel’s Wedding director, and Horrible Bosses gets some good talent. Read More »

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the extra man
American Splendor directors Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini return to Sundance with The Extra Man, a comedy which will screen in the Premieres section. Based on a novel by Jonathan Ames (Bored to Death), the film tells the story of a down-and-out playwright who escorts wealthy widows in Manhattan’s Upper East Side takes a young aspiring writer under his wing. The cast includes Kevin Kline, Paul Dano, John C. Reilly, and Katie Holmes. After the jump we have photos, a poster, and a very extended plot synopsis from this upcoming film.
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Dan Fogler is Sam Kinison

HBO has announced that Evan Almighty director Tom Shadyac will helm television movie about comic Sam Kinison. And who will play the great manic comic? Dan Fogler. You probably know him as the annoying fat guy they hire when they can’t afford Jack Black or Jonah Hill. That said, he has an uncanny resemblance to a young Kinison. The film will be based on Brother Sam: The Short, Spectacular Life of Sam Kinison, a memoir written by Sam’s brother and manager Bill Kinison. The official description for the book reads:

“A brother recalls the excessive and flamboyant life of the late comedian who died in an April 1992 car crash, portraying Kinison’s checkered early years, his road to fame and fortune, and his personal struggles.”

Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, the writer/directors of American Splendor, have penned the teleplay adaptation. I would have much rather seen Berman and Pulcini direct. Shadyac was responsible for the launch of Jim Carrey’s movie career (Ace Ventura, Liar Liar), but hasn’t produced a good movie in the last decade. Years ago, Howard Stern in talks to develop a film based on comic Kinison’s life, but for one reason or another, it  never gained momentum.

source: Variety

The Nanny Diaries

The Weinstein Company is moving the big screen adaptation of The Nanny Diaries (trailer) back FIVE MONTHS. The new Scarlett Johansson chick flick was scheduled to hit theaters on April 20th, but will now bow on September 7th 2007.

While a last minute release move is usually a bad sign, Harvey Weinstein claims the movie was made to push the film in awards contention. The movie will be released right at the beginning of “Oscar Season”, and the DVD release will coincide with the Golden Globes. The studio head also claimed that he didn’t want the film to get lost in the Summer of Sequels. I’ve seen the trailer, and I’m not buying the “awards season” excuse. Something smells fishy.

The Nanny Diaries was helmed by Robert Pulcini and Shari Springer Berman (American Splendor) and co-stars Laura Linney, Paul Giamatti, Chris Evans and Alicia Keys.

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