Jodie Fosterpublishes an impassioned plea to social media to leave Kristen Stewart and her private life alone. The two women know each other well from 2001: they spent 5 months on the set of Panic Room “mostly holed up in a space the size of a Manhattan closet” when Stewart turned 11 years old and played Foster’s daughter. Foster in The Daily Beast on Wednesday decries social media scrutiny for young actors:
We seldom consider the childhoods we unknowingly destroy in the process… I have been an actress since I was 3 years old, 46 years to date. I have no memories of a childhood outside the public eye. I am told people look to me as a success story… The truth is, like some curious radioactive mutant, I have invented my own gothic survival tools. I have fashioned rules to control the glaring eyes. Maybe I’ve organized my career choices to allow myself (and the ones I truly love) maximum personal dignity. And, yes, I have neurotically adapted to the gladiator sport of celebrity culture, the cruelty of a life lived as a moving target. In my era, through discipline and force of will, you could still manage to reach for a star-powered career and have the authenticity of a private life. Sure, you’d have to lose your spontaneity in the elaborate architecture. You’d have to learn to submerge beneath the foul air and breathe through a straw. But at least you could stand
BREAKING: Universal Pictures has taken the unusual step of outright denying a Hollywood Reporter story that Kristen Stewart had been dumped from the sequel to Snow White And The Huntsman. The studio issued this statement from Universal Co-Chairman Donna Langley: “We are extremely proud of Snow White And The Huntsman and we’re currently exploring all options to continue the franchise. Any reports that Kristen Stewart has been dropped are false.”
The studio, which feels it has launched two potential franchises this summer in Huntsman and the Seth MacFarlane-directed Ted, has been trying to figure out what to do with the former. As Deadline revealed yesterday, David Koepp, who’d been hired in April to script a straight sequel, isn’t putting pen to paper. The film was pricey, but its near $400 million worldwide gross puts it on the bubble for another film. Much of the creative talk internally has been to focus that on the Huntsman character played by Chris Hemsworth, who is emerging as a breakout leading man and who proved to be a bargain for the $5 million he earned for the first installment of the film. THR used all this as a referendum to stamp out the participation of Stewart because of recent events, which seemed a bit harsh and unfair, particularly since nary a word of the sequel or a spinoff has yet been written. Huntsman director Rupert Sanders is in … Read More »
Here’s an international trailer for director Walter Salles’ take on Jack Kerouac’s On The Road. With a screenplay by Jose Rivera, the movie staring Kristen Stewart, Sam Riley and Garrett Hedlund had its world premiere at Cannes this year. IFC and Sundance Selects are distributing in the U.S. but haven’t settled on a date:
Critics may have been mixed after this morning’s press screening, but the World Premiere audience at Wednesday night’s Cannes gala of director Walter Salles’ long-gestating film On The Road was highly enthusiastic giving the film about the Beat Generation a 10 minute standing ovation. Co-producer Rebecca Yeldham said it was sweet justification for the 8 years she has been shepherding the picture with Salles. I caught up with her and the cast at the ultra-crowded after-party next door to the Palais at the oddly-named club, Magic Garden Meets LeBaron. The film based on the famous 1957 classic book by Jack Kerouac (actually written in 1951) has had several people attempt a film version with no luck and it has taken 55 years to get to the screen. Kerouac himself even sent it to Marlon Brando right after publication but never got a response. Francis Ford Coppola eventually secured the rights over 30 years ago but couldn’t come up with a way to make the complex film work. Finally Salles and his The Motorcycle Diaries screenwriter Jose Rivera cracked the code and after some false starts finally got the job done (Roman Coppola is also a producer on the film for American Zoetrope). IFC and Sundance Selects will distribute the film but it won’t be part of their VOD platform, but rather a major theatrical release. IFC’s and Sundance Selects President Jonathan Sehring, also at the party , said he couldn’t be higher on the film and they plan to open it in December and … Read More »
If you’re Canadian and you want to talk to Brad Pitt or Kristen Stewart at the Cannes Film Festival, be prepared to pay. Toronto’s Alliance Films has sent out a menu of prices to Canadian journalists for them to pay if they want to participate in junkets in France for Pitt’s Killing Them Softly and Stewart’s On The Road. Alliance is the Canadian distributor for the two movies. The costs, all originally in Euros, are very specific. The price for a TV interview with Pitt is about $3,232. A one-on-one print interview with Stewart would be around $1,293. You can’t actually get a one-on-one print interview with Pitt, as the menu says the actor is only available for paired interviews with other Killing Me Softly actors such as James Gandolfini or Richard Jenkins. A number of prominent Canadian outlets like the Globe And Mail and the National Post have said they will not pay for, nor participate in, the interviews.
“Alliance decided not to partake in the Cannes junkets for Killing Them Softly and On the Road, however we wanted to provide Canadian journalists the opportunity to participate directly if they so choose,” a company spokesperson told Deadline. Alliance says that it will be fully paying for a junket for Canadian journalists when it brings the films and their stars to North America later this year. Alliance also said there will be no fees for … Read More »
A week before it premieres in competition at the Cannes Film Festival, On The Road has been acquired by AMC Networks. Picking up all U.S. rights to Walter Salles’ adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s Beat Generation classic, AMC Networks announced that its distribution labels IFC Films and Sundance Selects will release the film later this fall in theaters. The deal is estimated to be in the seven figures. Twilight star Kristen Stewart signed up in 2010 to play Marylou, the wife of the restless and free-spirited Dean Moriarty played by TRON: Legacy’s Garrett Hedlund. The film also stars Sam Riley, Kirsten Dunst Amy Adams, Tom Sturridge, Danny Morgan, Alice Braga, Elisabeth Moss and Viggo Mortensen. The screenplay is by Jose Rivera who worked with Salles on the director’s other roadtrip, 2004’s The Motorcycle Diaries. An On The Road film had been a long-term project of Francis Ford Coppola, who has been working on bringing Kerouac’s novel to the screen since 1978. Coppola serves as Executive Producer. The MK2 Production was produced by Nathanael Karmitz, Charles Gillibert, Rebecca Yeldham and Roman Coppola for American Zoetrope. Arianna Bocco, SVP of Acquisitions & Productions for Sundance Selects/IFC Films negotiated AMC’s purchase of On The Road with Cinetic Media’s Bart Walker for the producers.
Universal Pictures has released an extended new trailer for the Rupert Sanders-directedSnow White And The Huntsman, the revisionist fairy tale that will be released June 1. The studio has also released a featurette on the making of a film that stars Charlize Theron as the sinister queen, Kristen Stewart as Snow, and Thor‘s Chris Hemsworth as the Huntsman. The fantasy setting looks a lot like Middle Earth. Universal debuted the trailer on Comcast-owned Xfinity.com. Trailer is below, followed by the featurette. It looks pretty compelling, and the key is whether the young crowd that wants to see Snow White wrapped in chain mail and wielding a sword. Will those images be too upsetting? Similarly ominous images did not keep them away from Alice In Wonderland, which triggered the fairy tale frenzy.
If Summit Entertainment is actually serious about a merger or a sale, the company has the benefit of wheeling and dealing while it is at a high-water mark. Summit announced today that The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1, flew past $500 million in global box office in just 12 days. The film is at $508 million today. It was released November 18 and single-handedly has brightened the overall box office picture. The film has generated $223 million domestic, making it one of only 12 films to reach $220 million in 10 days. Creatively, I thought the movie would have been much better had director Bill Condon finished Stephenie Meyer’s Breaking Dawn book in one movie. Let’s face it, the Bella (Kristen Stewart) and Edward (Robert Pattinson) wedding and subsequent pregnancy were sooooo drawn out, and nothing much happened. But then again, I am not a teenage girl or a Summit executive looking at another half-billion dollar haul once the second installment comes out next November 16. Read More »
Last week we got a glimpse of Universal’s Snow White And The Huntsman directed by Rupert Sanders. The first trailer for Tarsem Singh’s take on the fairy tale arrived today. Relativity’s Mirror Mirror will make it to theaters March 16 ahead of Universal’s version set for June 1.
Kristen Stewart is in advanced talks for the female lead Kei in director Jaume Collet-Serra’s epic Akira, based on Katsuhiro Otomo’s six-volume graphic novel. Twitchfilm reported midday Tuesday that Stewart had been offered the part. She would join Garrett Hedlund, who has the male lead Keneda. Gary Oldman will play the Colonel. Akira has been a high priority for Warner Bros ever since the studio acquired it with Legendary Pictures two years ago from manga publisher Kodansha. The intention has been to make two films, each covering three books in the series. Akira was first adapted for the screen in 1988. Stewart Andrew Lazar is producing with Appian Way’s Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson Killoran.
EXCLUSIVE: If Joe Roth were any more closely associated with fairy tales, he’d be one of the Grimm Brothers. Roth, who help start Hollywood’s feverish devotion to fairy tale films by producing the $1 billion-grossing Alice in Wonderland, is negotiating to become producer of Maleficent, Disney’s re-telling of its 1959 classic Sleeping Beauty, this time told from the vantage point of the evil witch. It’s no secret that Angelina Jolie wants to play that character. The script was written by Linda Woolverton, who scripted Alice in Wonderland as well as Disney’s recently re-released The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast. They are looking for a director after a preliminary courtship of Alice helmer Tim Burton didn’t work out.
Aside from Alice in Wonderland, Roth is producing Disney’s Sam Raimi-directed Disney pic Oz: The Great and Powerful with James Franco, Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis and Rachel Weisz, as well as Snow White and the Huntsman, the Universal Pictures epic that is being directed by Rupert Sanders and stars Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth.
BREAKING: NBCUniversal’s new owners at Comcast have given a vote of confidence to the studio’s feature film operation. They’ve exercised an option on Universal Pictures’ Chairman Adam Fogelson and extended his contract through 2014. I’m told that Fogelson is, in turn, in the process of exercising the option of Donna Langley and she will continue as the studio’s co-chairman. They will also keep their executive team intact. Fogelson will continue to have full day-to-day operating responsibility for the Motion Picture Group, reporting to Universal Studios President and Chief Operating Officer Ron Meyer (whose contract was recently re-upped through 2015) and will now also report to NBCUniversal Chief Executive Officer Steve Burke.
While Universal has had its ups and downs, higher-ups are clearly convinced that Fogelson, Langley and their team are making progress. They’ve had recent hits –Bridesmaids, Hop! and Fast Five– but also had some recent misses that include The Dilemma, Change-Up and Cowboys & Aliens. In the latter case, the studio was on the hook for one-third of the film, and shared that third with Relativity Media. It has also been a year in which Fogelson and his team have made some painful decisions and let pricey productions go. That began with the Guillermo Del Toro-directed At the Mountains of Madness, which Universal developed for years and which was ready to go with Tom Cruise, until the studio made a late decision not to go forward because of the possibility the $150M film could carry an R-rating. Universal also dropped two projects that were in advanced stages of development: The Dark Tower, the Akiva Goldsman-directed adaptation of the Stephen King novel series that was to be made into three feature films and two limited-run TV series, with the first film and TV segment directed by Ron Howard and produced by Brian Grazer and Goldsman; and Oiuja, the Hasbro board game that had McG directing and Michael Bay and his Platinum Dunes partners producing with Hasbro. The moves were surprising because Howard and Grazer are cornerstone filmmakers for Universal; and Del Toro and Hasbro have overall deals there. Ouija is one of several Hasbro properties the studio dropped, the others being the Gore Verbinski-directed Clue, the Ridley Scott-directed Monopoly and Magic, The Gathering. These were part of a groundbreaking deal the studio made with the toymaker several years ago, but the studio and Hasbro have re-focused their attention solely on Battleship, Stretch Armstrong, and Candy Land. Read More »
Sony Pictures has acquired Shadow Runner, a pitch for an action thriller that will star Thor’s Chris Hemsworth. Beau Flynn and Tripp Vinson will produce through the Contrafilm banner with ROAR’s Will Ward. Studio’s keeping the fictional project under wraps, but this deal has taken awhile to come together, and its original genesis was an idea by Drive scribe Hossein Amini. The inspiration was an incident in which an Israeli assassination team targeted a Hamas leader whom the Israelis believe murdered several soldiers and helped stockpile Iranian-made missiles. He was tracked to Dubai, and the Israelis managed to smuggle in an entire 17-person hit team to take him out in the corridor of a five-star hotel. The operatives were captured on a hotel security camera trailing after the victim, reemerging and getting on the elevator after he was killed. I’m told that the film won’t replicate those events, but Hemsworth will lead an elite team of operatives who take on impossible tasks. Amini will be exec producer. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Bracing for its race against Relativity Media on rival Snow White films, Universal Pictures has hired Hossein Amini to do a rewrite of Snow White and the Huntsman, the Rupert Sanders-directed film that stars Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth. Evan Spiliotopoulos wrote the most recent draft. Amini scripted Drive, the Nicolas Winding Refn-directed film that just debuted in Cannes, and he also rewrote the Keanu Reeves-starrer 47 Ronin, which director Carl Rinsch is directing for Universal.
Universal and Relativity have been playing a game of can you top this in terms of release dates. Universal moved up its Snow White film from late 2012 to a June 1 date, which put it a month ahead of Relativity’s Snow White film, the one that stars Julia Roberts, Lily Collins and Armie Hammer, with Tarsem Singh directing. Then, Relativity Media trumped Universal by setting a March 16, 2012 release. It has created bad blood between the studio and Ryan Kavanaugh, but that is how it stands at the moment. Hossein is repped by WME.
EXCLUSIVE: The Weinstein Company, already on a Cannes acquisition spree, has emerged as the clear frontrunner for domestic distribution rights on The Wettest County in the World, after another all-night bargaining session between Harvey Weinstein’s acquisition team and CAA. I’m told a deal is very close. Considering how many distributors showed interest going into the weekend, it might seem surprising that the Wettest County in the World has taken this long. Relativity Media had been the favorite all weekend since posting the highest bid, north of $5 million. I heard they got word from the producers last night that it wasn’t going to happen with them. I suspect what gave TWC the edge is its awards season experience, and a relationship that is growing between Harvey Weinstein and Megan Ellison, who financed the picture with Michael Benaroya. Ellison just sold to Weinstein world rights to the untitled Paul Thomas Anderson-directed film, which starts production next month with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix starring. I believe that The Wettest County in the World will get a platform release at year end, and open wide in early 2012.
The behind the scenes drama that has been going on all weekend illustrates the predicament for distributors on the Croisette who are trying to maintain some discipline in the closest thing to a sellers market that Cannes has seen in years. Buyers in this case wanted some control over a film that is done … Read More »
BREAKING:Since neither Universal Pictures nor Relativity Media are blinking about going ahead with rival Snow White films, it seemed inevitable that Universal would not be content for its film to come out six months later. So the studio has just swapped release dates of Judd Apatow’s next untitled film (which was supposed to come out June 1), and has given that June 1, 2012 date to Snow White and the Huntsman. At present, Relativity Media’s film, The Brothers Grimm: Snow White, is dated for June 29, 2012 with shooting to begin in August. We’ll have to see whether Ryan Kavanaugh’s film division reconsiders. That Tarsem Singh-directed film stars Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer and Nathan Lane. The lesson of rival films about Truman Capote and In Cold Blood echoes loudly here. Capote came out first, won an Oscar for Philip Seymour Hoffman, and nobody cared when Infamous came out later. Being the second film on the same subject is perilous and when that prospect faced Baz Luhrmann and Dino De Laurentiis on their Alexander the Great movie because Oliver Stone beat them to the start gate, the project was scrapped.
Universal’s decision comes days after the studio finally set Thor star Chris Hemsworth as its Huntsman, which Deadline was the first to reveal would happen. He joins Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Sam Claflin in the Rupert Sanders-directed film. Apatow (who must be strutting after Bridesmaids defied expectations last … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Universal Pictures is setting Sam Claflin to play the role of the prince in Snow White and the Huntsman, the Rupert Sanders-directed re-imagining of the fairy tale that stars Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Charlize Theron as the evil queen. The studio is still working on its huntsman, and as Deadline was the first to tell you, the offer is with Thor star Chris Hemsworth. Claflin just starred in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and he has just been offered the title role opposite Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore in the Warner Bros/Legendary supernatural thriller The Seventh Son. Claflin could make that film, which starts in March, and then follow with Snow White and the Huntsman. CAA and Independent Talent rep him.
EXCLUSIVE: ‘Thor’ star Chris Hemsworth has emerged as a front runner to star in Snow White and the Huntsman, the Universal fairy tale that also Charlize Theron and Kristen Stewart. Rupert Sanders is directing. Hemsworth’s stock is up as Thor continues to clean up overseas in anticipation of Friday’s domestic opening for the Kenneth Branagh-directed Marvel film. It isn’t clear yet whether Hemsworth will take that role. Stay tuned.