EXCLUSIVE: Directors Martha Stephens (Pilgrim Song, Passenger Pigeons) and Aaron Katz (Cold Weather, Quiet City) first met at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts before launching their film careers. Now the duo have co-written and are co-directing buddy comedy Land Ho! with David Gordon Green, another UNCSA alum, executive producing. Pic follows two ex-brothers-in-law (This Is Martin Bonner‘s Paul Eenhoorn and Eastbound & Down‘s Earl Lynn Nelson) on a road trip through Iceland attempting to reclaim their youth in Reykjavik nightclubs, trendy spas, and rugged campsites. Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy, and Christina Jennings are producing, with Reykjavik-based Vintage Pictures’ Hlin Johannesdottir and Birgitta Björnsdottir co-producing. This is the first film from backer Gamechanger Films, which funds features helmed and co-directed by women. Gamechanger’s Julie Parker Benello, Dan Cogan, Geralyn Dreyfous, and Wendy Ettinger are also executive producers on the pic which is currently filming in Iceland. Emily Ting of Unbound Feet Productions is co-executive producer.
September 6, 2013 (Toronto, Canada) — Academy Award winner Holly Hunter (“Thirteen,” “The Piano”) has signed on to star in David Gordon Green’s drama, “Manglehorn,” financed and produced by Worldview Entertainment. Hunter will play the female lead character opposite Academy Award winner, Al Pacino, in the title role. Chris Messina (“Argo”) and Harmony Korine (“Spring Breakers”) will also star. Green will direct the film, which is based on a screenplay by Paul Logan. Worldview CEO, Christopher Woodrow, and COO, Molly Conners, will produce alongside Lisa Muskat, Derrick Tseng and Green. Principal photography will commence this fall in Austin, Texas.
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.”
EXCLUSIVE: Worldview Entertainment has committed to finance and produce Manglehorn, which David Gordon Green will direct from a script he wrote with Paul Logan. I hear they are going out to Al Pacino for the lead role of A.J. Manglehorn, an aging, ordinary guy in a small town who nurses his sick cat, squeezes out a conversation with the local bank teller every Friday, and eats at the same place every day. But there is more to Manglehorn than meets the eye: he’s an ex-con who, 40 years ago, gave up the woman of his dreams for a big “job”. He now obsesses daily over the choices he made. After a dramatic effort to start over, Manglehorn faces a terrifying moment and is unmasked as a guy with a very, very dark past.
This figures to be a hot sales title at Cannes, and in a pitch to potential buyers, Green describes Manglehorn “as the story of a guy who gave up the love of his life for a life of crime and now he regrets it as the world crumbles in front of him. His profession as a locksmith is symbolic of a guy who’s trying to find the key to put his life back together. It’s a love story, the choices you make in your youth and the situations you set up for yourself: you end up sitting alone at the dinner table talking to a cat! I do think there is a beautiful humor in this.”
Wong Kar Wai’s jury gave Romanian film Child’s Pose the top prize Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival this evening. The story follows a mother trying to save her son from prison. In accepting the award, director Călin Peter Netzer spoke of “commercial censorhip against arthouse cinema” and thanked the Berlinale, sales agents and distributors for “bringing arthouse cinema to the public.” David Gordon Green was named Best Director for the well-received Prince Avalanche, a film he remade from the Icelandic movie Either Way, transporting the action to Texas. Magnolia acquired the film in Sundance. The hotly-tipped Paulina Garcia took the Best Actress prize for her turn in Gloria which Roadside Attractions acquired earlier in the festival. And, Nazif Mujic was named Best Actor for Danis Tanovic’s Jury Grand Prix winner An Episode In The Life Of An Iron Picker.
While the competition roster at this year’s Berlin Film Festival left some cold, the last two years have produced a foreign language Oscar winner (2011′s A Separation) and two foreign language Oscar nominees (this year’s A Royal Affair and War Witch). And another film that won a prize in 2012, Sister, was also shortlisted for the foreign language Oscar this year. So, it will be interesting to watch the international careers of this year’s winners to see if the trend continues. Below is a list of the main winners along with the various sidebar and independent jury prizes which were announced earlier today:
The Berlin Film Festival has rounded out the official lineup, with 24 films in the program. Of those, 19 will compete for Golden and Silver Bears. Titles added to the previously announced films include the late River Phoenix’s last film, Dark Blood, and Richard Linklater’s Before Midnight, both screening out of competition, and David Gordon Greene’s Prince Avalanche in competition. Prince Avalanche and Before Midnight are premiering in Sundance. Berlin runs from February 7-17. The full list of additions is below:
By Richard Linklater
With Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy
International Premiere / out of competition
By George Sluizer
With River Phoenix († 1993), Judy Davis, Jonathan Pryce, Karen Black
International Premiere / out of competition
Worldview Entertainment will finance and produce the David Gordon Green-directed Joe, a Southern drama to star Nicolas Cage. Gary Hawkins adapted from the novel by Larry Brown. Principal photography is scheduled to begin in early November in Texas. London-based WestEnd Films will handle international sales and introduce the film to foreign buyers this week at the Toronto Film Festival. CAA, which packaged and arranged financing for Joe, represents the film’s domestic distribution rights. Joe is the story of an ex-con who becomes the unlikeliest of role models to 15-year-old Gary Jones, the oldest child of a homeless family ruled by a drunk, worthless father. Together they try to find a path to redemption and the hope for a better life in the rugged, dirty world of small-town Mississippi.
This new trailer for 20th Century Fox’s raunchy R-rated comedy The Sitter starring Jonah Hill as the world’s most irresponsible babysitter is attached to Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes in theaters this weekend. Release date is December 9th. Directed by David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express) and produced by Mike De Luca, …
20th Century Fox Television has inked a pod deal with Rough House Pictures. Under the one-year pact, Rough House principals David Gordon Green, Jody Hill, Danny McBride and head Matt Reilly will develop animated and live-action comedies targeted for broadcast networks. This marks the first network TV deal for the …