Posted on Thursday, October 6th, 2011 by Angie Han
The more people get cast in Zal Batmanglij‘s The East, the more interesting it sounds. The latest addition is the always excellent Patricia Clarkson, who’ll play the boss of co-writer and star Brit Marling.
The thriller revolves around an agent (Marling) from a private security firm who is tasked with infiltrating a terrorist group called The East. Once she’s in, however, she finds herself falling for the group’s leader, probably because he looks exactly like Alexander Skarsgard. Other recent additions to the cast have been Ellen Page as Skarsgard’s ex and another member of the organization, and Toby Kebbell as a doctor who takes a tainted drug and develops Parkinson’s-like symptoms. [The Playlist]
After the jump, Octavia Spencer goes to Vegas and Michael Angarano goes home.
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Posted on Tuesday, October 4th, 2011 by Angie Han
M.C. Gainey, a.k.a. Mr. Friendly on Lost, has entered negotiations to star in Quentin Tarantino‘s Django Unchained as what sounds like one of the nastiest characters in a film filled with vile characters. Gainey is up for the part of Big John Brittle, an overseer at the Carrucan Plantation who sets the plot in motion by raping Django’s wife Broomhilda and branding Django’s cheek with the letter ‘R’ (for “runaway”). Django (Jamie Foxx) goes on to team up with Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), a German bounty hunter interested in the large reward on Big John, to free his wife from the clutches of villainous plantation owner Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio).
Gerald McRaney, Dennis Christopher, and Laura Cayouette are also signed on to star in the “Southern-fried spaghetti Western,” while Kurt Russell is in talks to replace Kevin Costner as Candie’s right-hand man Ace Woody. Production is expected to begin next month for a Christmas 2012 release. [Variety]
After the jump, RocknRolla star Toby Kebbell goes East, while Rose McGowan heads to Napa.
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Posted on Thursday, September 29th, 2011 by Angie Han
Ellen Page is in final negotiations to star with Brit Marling and Alexander Skarsgard in The East, Zal Batmanglij‘s thriller about a mysterious eco-terrorism organization called The East. Marling, who co-wrote the script with Batmanglij, leads as an undercover agent who infiltrates the group but then finds herself developing feelings for the group’s leader (Skarsgard). Page will play Izzy, a member of The East and Skarsgard’s ex, who becomes jealous of relationship between Marling and Skarsgard. Page replaces Felicity Jones, who had to drop out of the project due to press commitments for Like Crazy.
The addition of the Oscar-nominated Page should add even more buzz to a film that’s already been getting plenty of it. Marling and Batmanglij broke out at this year’s Sundance with Sound of my Voice, and True Blood star Skarsgard has a handful of interesting projects in the works. Page’s next big-screen appearance will be in next year’s Woody Allen-directed Bop Decameron, alongside Jesse Eisenberg, Penelope Cruz, and Alec Baldwin.
The East is set to begin shooting in Nashville in October. [Variety]
After the jump, Anthony Mackie dreams up a new project for himself and Tom Everett Scott pairs up with Marisa Tomei.
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From Generation Kill through to True Blood, Alexander Skarsgård‘s profile has been rising quickly. He was a fan favorite choice to play Thor, and though that didn’t happen — and Chris Hemsworth acquitted himself pretty well in the role, making his own career in the process — Skarsgård isn’t hurting for work. He’s already shot parts in Rod Lurie’s remake of Straw Dogs (maybe not the best choice, OK) and Lars von Trier’s Melancholia. He’s in Battleship, and has now landed a role in pedigreed indie The East. Read More »
Two actresses broke out of this year’s Sundance Film Festival in a big way: Elizabeth Olsen (thanks to Martha Marcy May Marlene and Silent House) and Brit Marling, who starred in and co-wrote Another Earth and The Sound of My Voice. Elizabeth Olsen has four films in various stages of completion (Red Lights; Peace, Love, & Misunderstanding; Liberal Arts; and Very Good Girls) while Brit Marling has shot a role in Arbitrage and flirted with Breaking the Girl.
And while the actress is looking to make The East, about “an FBI agent who infiltrates an ecoterrorist group,” which she co-wrote with The Sound of My Voice director Zal Batmanglij, there is a queue of big-time directors reportedly courting Marling for their upcoming projects. Read More »
One of my favorite movies of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival was Zal Batmanglij‘s Sound of My Voice, a microbudget dramatic thriller which is about a couple who infiltrate a cult in the San Fernando Valley. But the story has a tiny bit of a science fiction as well — the leader of the group is a woman named Maggie who claims to be a time traveler from the year 2054. The couple sneak cameras into the cult hoping to expose her scam. You can read my lengthy review here (I’ve tried my hardest to keep it spoiler free). Variety has word that Fox Searchlight has acquired distribution rights to the film.
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Posted on Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 by Angie Han
The buzz surrounding indie screenwriter/actress Brit Marling has been all but deafening coming out of this year’s Sundance and SXSW festivals. Marling co-wrote and starred in two films that earned rave reviews at both festivals — the sci-fi romance Another Earth, directed by Mike Cahill, and the dramatic thriller Sound of My Voice, directed by Zal Batmanglij — and is widely being talked about as the next indie It Girl. (Non-festivalgoers might better remember her as Britta’s lesbian friend Page from Community.)
But Marling’s not resting on her laurels. She recently revealed her next three projects: Nicholas Jarecki‘s Arbitrage, Jamie Babbit‘s Breaking the Girl, and The East, which reunites her with Batmanglij. And at least one of those features hot girl-on-girl action! Hit the jump to learn more.
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One of my favorite movies of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival was Zal Batmanglij‘s Sound of My Voice, a microbudget dramatic thriller which is about a couple who infiltrate a cult in the San Fernando Valley. But the story has a tiny bit of a science fiction as well — the leader of the group is a woman named Maggie who claims to be a time traveler from the year 2054. The couple sneak cameras into the cult hoping to expose her scam. You can read my lengthy review here (I’ve tried my hardest to keep it spoiler free). I’m really shocked that this film has not been picked up yet, especially since its filled with franchise and viral marketing possibilities (it is the first part of a planned trilogy, seriously…). I still think they need to change the horrible title.
The movie will be playing at the South by Southwest Film Festival in March, and the producers have released what’s being called a trailer, but what in actuality is a one and a half minute clip from the very beginning of the film (so there are no spoilers in as much as you’re watching the first minute or so of the movie). It’s probably not the most interesting clip either, as this is the type of story that takes a little while to build. Either way, you can watch the clip embedded after the jump.
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