Earlier this week there was a brief bit of news that Dark Fields, the new film from Neil Burger (The Illusionist) had changed titles; the movie is now called Limitless.

Now there’s a sort of viral promo for the film. It features Bradley Cooper more or less in character as the pitchman for a wonderdrug called NZT, aka ‘the clear pill.’ The drug can reportedly solve almost every problem known to man by allowing humans to access their entire physical and mental potential. But…there are a couple of possibly troubling side effects. Just a couple. Check out the promo after the break. Read More »

Dark Fields set

A couple new on set behind the scenes video pieces have appeared on the web today, including a visit to the set of Neil Burger‘s Dark Fields, where they are shooting “critical scene” on the streets of Philadelphia with Robert De Niro and Bradley Cooper, and Entertainment Tonight’s visit to the set of Juan Diego SolanasUpside Down which involves stars Jim Sturgess and Kirsten Dunst flying through the air on a blue screen stage.
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There are three projects in development with the working title of Friends with Benefits, and now one of them has landed Justin Timberlake. Will Gluck is directing this one for Screen Gems, about “a headhunter [who] recruits a magazine editor and since each is too busy to find a mate, they agree to sleep together with no strings attached. Things get complicated when the guy falls for the girl, who’s dating someone else.”

For those keeping score, there’s also the Ivan Reitman film with the same title, starring Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher, which was originally called Fuckbuddies. The third use of the title is an NBC pilot written by (500) Days of Summer writers Scott Neustadter and Michael Weber. The TV show could give Screen Gems some competition for the title, but somehow I don’t expect that many of you are going to be heartbroken about a name change for a new romcom. [Deadline]

After the break, we’ll check in on Winona Ryder and Anna Friel. Read More »

A Good Year

Abbie Cornish gave one of last year’s great performances in Bright Star, and was rather overlooked when awards time came around. She has, however, won a better sort of recognition for a good performance: more work. The actress will appear in Neil Burger‘s Dark Fields, and in W.E., the sophomore directorial effort from Madonna. Read More »


Often with these aggregated casting pieces the idea is to group together a number of fairly small stories. In this case the names are big — Robert De Niro, Rachel McAdams, Woody Allen, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carrell — but the films are either ones we don’t know much about or have recently covered in detail. Essentially, we don’t have too much to add to the news about any of these projects at this point other than: “hey, now this person is on board.”

Take Dark Fields, the thriller directed by Neil Burger that will star Bradley Cooper. There was recently unconfirmed word that Elizabeth Banks is joining the cast, and while that remains to be confirmed, Variety now says that Robert De Niro is on board. He’ll play “a brilliant financial mogul who begins pursuing Cooper’s character,” who is a New York writer “who comes into possession of a designer drug that gives him newfound intelligence and success.” Time was I would have been thrilled to heard about De Niro being part of a film like this. Can Burger make this one work? Hope so.

After the break, McAdams augments Allen, and Ryan Gosling might do a comedy. Read More »


Against all laws of nature, Big Momma’s House 3 keeps happening, though it probably won’t be called that. Martin Lawrence is going to go back into rubbery drag for the third outing, and he’ll be joined by Brandon T. Jackson of Tropic Thunder and Percy Jackson. Guess everyone’s gotta eat, but why does it have to be a shit sandwich?

This one will see “FBI agent Malcolm Turner (Lawrence) and his 17-year-old nephew, Trent (Jackson), go undercover at an all-girls performing arts school after Trent witnesses a murder. Posing as Big Momma and Charmaine, they must find the murderer before he finds them.” The f ilm shoots in Atlanta soon; if I’m out for drinks sometime in the next month and come across the casts and crews of this and Hall Pass fighting in the streets, Anchorman style, I’ll be so happy. [Variety]

After the break, Sean Bean has his work cut out for him, and Elizabeth Banks may have a cool new project. Read More »


The Hangover star Bradley Cooper is now set to replace Shia LaBeouf in Neil Burger’s (The Illusionist) upcoming thriller, Dark Fields. The film is an adaptation of the Alan Glynn book of the same name, and will feature a script by eclectic screenwriter, Leslie Dixon (The Thomas Crowne Affair, Mrs. Doubtfire, Hairspray). The film is among many projects Cooper has signed on for post-Hangover (which is strange, because I still know the guy best as Sydney Bristow’s best friend on Alias).

Cooper will play a struggling writer who takes a top-secret pharmaceutical drug that makes him smarter. He finds success, but also comes to learn there are consequences, such as the phenomenon “trip-switching” which makes him perceive time moving similar to stop-motion.

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Director Neil Burger (The Illusionist) has confirmed to Coming Soon that he’ll begin shooting Dark Fields in NYC with Shia LaBeouf this winter, making it the next film for the actor after Transformers 2. The project sounds pretty cool and seems to be flying under the radar, so if you’re curious, let us point you to our report from April, in which we referred to it as Adderall: The Movie.

Based on Alan Glynn‘s 2002 thriller of the same name, LaBeouf will play a young man who ascends the ranks of the Big Apple social elite thanks to a “smart pill,” one that has addictive side effects and dangerous consequences. There’s also an epic Big Pharma conspiracy in the book. Leslie Dixon (Loverboy, The Birds remake) adapted the script. Hat tip to Best Week Ever for milking this photo of LaBeouf all week long, one that’s particularly fitting for this post given Dark Fields‘ subject matter. And is it just us, or did Shia backlash go full-tilt this week?

“It’s a rush, mon.”

Shia LaBeouf starring in Adderall: The Movie? That’s certainly what it sounds like. Variety reports that the Transformers actor has signed on for the lead in an adaptation of author Alan Glynn‘s 2002 topical druggy thriller Dark Fields. Neil Burger (The Illusionist, Re: Not Neil Hamburger), will direct for Universal. The book is about a lowly copy editor and former cocaine user (yet another Bright Lights, Big City for the Oughts!) who is introduced to a new (fictional) drug called MDT-48, a “smart pill” that allows him to quickly ascend the ranks of success in New York City, from modern day member of the “creative lower class” to hot shot financial badass. As for the Adderall/Ritalin comparison, here’s an excerpt from a review I found online…

“What author Glynn has imagined is the perfect drug for the information age, one that makes its user a match for the ceaseless flow of data from television and newspapers to the Internet. Rather than being lost in the overload of endless news, history, opinions, and other information, the user of MDT-48 can take it all in and find meaningful patterns within it. It is an addictive combination…”

Of course, the arch of life calls for the lead character, named Eddie Spinola, to face a downward spiral of paranoia and other semi-psychotic side effects often referred to by real life junkies as “the fear.” He also “loses weight and writes brilliantly” and becomes “obsessed with organizing his music collection to perfection.” Can’t wait for the snarky Gawker/blogverse posts tomorrow (actually, I can). There’s also a big pharma conspiracy subplot in the book involving the intelligentsia and the apocalypse.

Between this project and LaBeouf’s dream project biopic for the effed up rapper Cage, the guy is certainly looking to mess around with his image > growing a goatee. Might Dark Fields be Disturbia for the ever-popular “study drug”? The script was adapted by Leslie Dixon (The Birds remake, The Thomas Crown Affair), and Variety says she took a pay cut in favor of more creative control. I see this movie spurring many a 20/20 and Dateline special.

Discuss: If Shia LaBeouf is ready to go “dark” in a potential blockbuster is Dark Fields a good choice? Any Slashfilm readers dig/hate the book, which didn’t sell too great (it will now) but received decent press?

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