EXCLUSIVE: I’m hearing there will be a surprise late entry to the Telluride lineup that was announced earlier this week. There will be a sneak screening of The Weinstein Company-distributed documentary Salinger on Monday, September 2. I’m told that the film’s director Shane Salerno is on the way there with others involved in the film. The Telluride sneak screening, which is the first public showing of the docu, will be followed by a Q&A with the director before he heads to New York for the film’s premiere the following night. Salinger already elicited the bombshell revelation that J.D. Salinger left behind several literary works he wrote in seclusion which he directed be published after his death. There is more where that came from. The film opens in New York and Los Angeles next Friday, and begins broadening to other cities beginning the following week. I could not get confirmation from TWC, but trust me, you can dress for this one.
EXCLUSIVE: The black comedy from Canadian indie helmer Bruce McDonald centers on a disgruntled Toronto ad-agency employee who struggles with his rage and raising his infant son alone after his ex-teacher wife is imprisoned for sleeping with her 14-year-old student. The Husband was written by Kelly Harms and …
EXCLUSIVE: Focus Features has found a writer for Longbourn, the period pic based on the novel that reimagines Jane Austen’s Pride And Prejudice from the point of view of the servants at the Bennet family estate. Angela Workman has come aboard to adapt the Jo Baker novel that Focus acquired rights to in February to co-produce with Random House Studio. The book is set to be published this fall by Transworld in the UK, Alfred A. Knopf in the U.S., and Random House in Canada. Workman, repped by Gersh and UK-based Sayle Screen, is no stranger to the adaptation game. Her credits include Snow Flower And The Secret Fan, based on the Lisa See novel, and she wrote the script based on Diane Ackerman’s nonfiction best-seller The Zookeeper’s Wife for Annapurna Pictures. She also penned the historical tale Bronte for DreamWorks, and she is just wrapping work on an untitled biopic of Depression-era photojournalist Dorothea Lange.to be produced by David Fincher and directed by Leslie Dektor.
Series Adaptation Of ‘Westworld’ From J.J. Abrams, Jonathan Nolan & Jerry Weintraub Gets Pilot Production Commitment At HBO
In one of the biggest commitments ever for HBO, the pay cable network has nabbed Westworld, a drama series inspired by Michael Crichton’s 1973 sci-fi movie. The project, from J.J. Abrams‘ Bad Robot, Person Of Interest creator Jonathan Nolan, producer Jerry Weintraub and Warner Bros TV, has received a pilot production commitment. It marks the first major cable sale for Bad Robot, which had been focused on broadcast TV for the past few years with such series as Fringe, Person Of Interest, Revolution and the upcoming Believe. Written by Nolan and Lisa Joy (Burn Notice), Westworld is described as a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin. WME-repped Nolan is set to direct the pilot, which he and UTA-repped Joy will executive produce with Abrams, Weintraub and Bryan Burk. Kathy Lingg is co-executive producing, while Athena Wickam serves as a producer. Warner Bros TV is producing with Bad Robot, Jerry Weintraub Prods. and Kilter Films.
Anthony D’Alessandro is Managing Editor of AwardsLine.
If there are large shoes being left behind on Saturday Night Live this coming season, they belong to Bill Hader. For seven seasons, he’s been the impersonator extraordinaire, hitting high notes with his take on Al Pacino, Clint Eastwood and Vincent Price to name a few, but also with his non-celeb eccentrics such as Italian TV host/motor mouth Vinny Vedecci and, of course, effeminate “Weekend Update” New York City correspondent Stefon (whose Anderson Cooper wedding send-off was actually planned a year in advance by Hader). Unlike some SNL alums who overstay their tenure on the show and segue to limited opportunities, Hader is departing in his prime and looking at blue skies. Similar to Steve Carell in the wake of The Daily Show, Hader is delicately balancing the comedic persona he carved on SNL with dramatic feature roles in The Disappearance Of Eleanor Rigby: His And Her and with Kristen Wiig in The Skeleton Twins as well as voice-over fare in the Hulu series The Awesomes and Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2. He already has a 2009 Emmy win for best animated program (under 30 minutes) under his belt as a producer on South Park; however, his recent Emmy nomination for best supporting comedy actor comes as his second in a row for SNL. Hader spoke with us about his departure from the show, its comedic mechanics and what lies ahead.
Related: EMMYS: Comedy Lead Acting Handicap
The undisputed star so far of the 40th Telluride Film Festival, Robert Redford received his second packed-to-the-rafters tribute this morning on top of the mountain at the Chuck Jones Cinema (each tributee must do two of these here — the Coen brothers and T Bone Burnett are up next tonight and Saturday morning). Considering he just went through the two-hour program 14 hours earlier and this one started at 9 AM, Redford was in great form and perhaps more introspective about his life and career than I have heard him in this kind of setting. At Friday night’s version of the tribute he was presented with the festival’s Silver Medallion (by surprise guest Ralph Fiennes, who starred in his Quiz Show). Of course Redford is being talked about in a big way for the Best Actor Oscar for his tour-de-force one-man starring role in J.C. Chandor’s All Is Lost, so a look back at his remarkable career can’t hurt. Although it wasn’t mentioned this morning, Redford incredibly has only been Oscar-nominated once as an actor, for the light-hearted The Sting (1973). He does have Oscars for his 1980 directorial debut, Ordinary People and an Honorary Oscar for his work with Sundance.
The first hour was devoted to a wide-ranging clip-by-clip look at his acting career beginning with the live TV production of The Iceman Cometh to such iconic film roles as Barefoot In The Park, The Candidate, Downhill Racer, Jeremiah Johnson, The Way We Were, The Sting, Three Days Of The Condor, All The President’s Men, The Electric Horseman, Brubaker, The Natural and Out Of Africa. Of his nine films as a director the only clip shown was for A River Runs Through It which starred a young Brad Pitt — the one actor along with George Clooney whose career trajectory seems closest to Redford’s consistently intelligent and high-wattage movie star course over the last half century.
The latest episode of The Tinsel Zone, a web series created by current Hollywood assistants, is described by its makers as a pitch meeting run by an Ari Emanuel-inspired Hollywood boss (down to the “tan skin, Chicago accent, etc” they write). Director Zach Copeland works at 1821 Pictures and series …
With head-spinning volume of broadcast development every year, it is inevitable that some projects fall through the cracks or don’t realize their full potential. It is encouraging that the networks appear more and more willing to give shows another chance. Several new series this coming season, including ABC’s The Goldbergs and Super Fun Night and CBS’ We Are Men, had been previously developed at the same or another network. And an unusually large number of pilots from last season were given a second lease on life with cast extensions. (One, CBS comedy The McCarthys, already received an order for a new pilot.) Here are two other projects from last season that are getting a second shot.
Stephen Frears’ Philomena starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan is set for a high-profile Gala slot October 16 at the BFI London Film Festival, which runs from October 9-20. The relationship drama about a mother’s search for her long-lost …
The deadline for Academy of Television Arts & Sciences voters returning at-home judging ballots for Telecast Awards categories to Ernst & Young is 5 PM PT today. The Creative Arts Emmy Awards are September 15 and the Primetime Emmy …
The nation’s second-biggest theater chain has tried for an IPO more than once in the past, and the last effort was scotched last September after it was officially acquired by China’s Wanda Group in a deal worth …
David Gordon Green‘s competition title Joe debuted for the press here in Venice this morning. A serious, sometimes violent story, it’s been well-received on the Lido with star Nicolas Cage getting some very strong notices. He plays the titular character, a good man working hard to stifle inner demons. A chance at redemption, and perhaps a new direction in life, comes in the form of Gary (Tye Sheridan), a 15-year-old whose drifter family has settled nearby. Gordon Green likens the film, based on the novel by Larry Brown, to a Western. (The Worldview Entertainment-backed pic is being handled by CAA for domestic and there were buyers — and applause — at the screenings this morning.)
Joe is the helmer’s 9th film and is “distinct” from the previous ones he’s made, “I think it stands out,” he said today. But he allows that the films in his body of work have “themes that thread them all together like a bizarre quilt.” He and Cage expressed their mutual appreciation during a press conference this afternoon. Gordon Green said that had he been physically able, he would have done backflips when he learned that Cage responded to the script. Cage said he hadn’t seen the finished movie yet, but that he would have done somersaults “naked” to work with Gordon Green. “He is willing to bear his soul. I knew he was a kindred spirit.”