Joe Caranahan on The Hollywood Strike

Joe CarnahanAll this talk of a potential strike has got me thinking: Will the strike actually happen? All my friends who are currently working at Hollywood studios believe it will and have told me that the studios are preparing like it’s the end of the world. Instead of preparing for the worst, why aren’t the studios trying to make good and keep the unions happy?

I haven’t been able to get any of my director friends to comment on the strike on the record, so I found Smokin Aces writer/director Joe Carnahan’s comments refreshingly honest. Carnahan begins a 50 day production on White Jazz soon, and he plans to follow that up with Killing Pablo in June 2008 (after post production). He thinks that is possible “providing the actors don’t strike…”

“…and I don’t think that’s going to happen. I think the WGA is going to go out in another two weeks and it’s gonna be so ugly and potentially protracted that it’s gong to scare off SAG and the DGA and they’re going to come to an agreement before the June 30th drop dead date. I really think this is where it’s headed.

I’ve talked to friends of mine, writers and directors and agents and everybody  has this bunker mentality…this strike is happening and people are going to be destroyed overnight. Careers are going to be crushed and an industry torpedoed. The respective parties as so far apart right now, the notion that in two weeks, there will be this miraculous stick save and all will be resolved, is insane…”

You can always count on Joe for his candid thoughts.


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I was talking last night to a group of friends about how we all really want JJ Abrams’ Star Trek to be good but with the casting announcements that have been made so far, I’m starting to get a bit worried. What happened to the days when Matt Damon was rumored to be playing Captain Kirk? I’m not saying that these aren’t capable actors, they just aren’t the level of talent and names that I think everyone was expecting.

So today’s Star Trek casting news revolves around a new villain named Nero, who is being played by Eric Bana. And other reports have Chris Pine (Just My Luck, Smokin’ Aces) is “in talks” to star as Captain Kirk. But apparent there are some scheduling conflicts that might not make this a sure thing. But honestly, what else does Chris Pine have going for him? The answer is Joe Carnahan’s White Jazz. Star Trek is certainly the higher profile film of the two, but White Jazz has the potential for critical acclaim. So what will Pine do?

Director Joe Carnahan has commented on the situation on his blog:

I will neither confirm nor deny that statement.
I’ll just say that it would be a pleasure to reunite with Pine on WJ and go out and kill that Junior role. It’s really the second lead in the film and the one that requires the biggest corkscrew to an actor’s performance.  It’s a helluva hill to summit but Pine has true, natural, unforced ability and gifts.

We’ll see how it all shakes out…

Am I the only one that is disappointed that the guy who potentially could be playing Captain f’n Kirk’s biggest role to date was in a crappy Lindsay Lohan movie? How did we go from Matt Damon to the guy from Just My Luck?

We’re still missing Bones, Scotty, and Sulu, and I’m sure we’ll hear some names attached to those roles in the coming weeks as production ramps up.

credit: Hollywood Reporter

White Jazz Casting

White JazzThe characters of Junior Stemmons and Glenda Bledsoe have been cast in Joe Carnahan’s upcoming adaptation of James Ellroy’s White Jazz. So who will be playing Stemmons and Bledsoe? Carnahan won’t say.

“I cant reveal their names but rest assured, the choices will shock and amaze: Pissing off some while pleasing many more,” says Carnahan. “I can tell you one of the actors I worked with in Smokin’ Aces will be playing whackjob deviant kid cop Junior Stemmons.”

So anyone willing to place some guesses on which Smokin’ Aces alumni will be joining George Clooney?

Set in late 1950s Los Angeles, White Jazz tells the story of vice cop Dave Klein (Clooney). When he senses he’s being set up by the police commissioner, he sets out to expose a decades-old network of corruption engineered by the LAPD. Jason Bateman and Peter Berg are also attached to the production. The film will hit theaters in 2009.

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