The latest entry into the inspirational sports movie is based on the longest winning streak in sports history — or rather, what happened when it ended. De La Salle High School in Northern California had gone 12 years and 151 games without knowing the agony of defeat. When The Game Stands Tall focuses on the lives of the players and coaches and their families after the streak was snapped. Backlash, self-doubt, serious illness, death. The ensemble cast features Jim Caviezel, Laura Dern, Michael Chiklis and Alexander Ludwig. Thomas Carter (Coach Carter) directs the Mandalay/TriStar pic, which was written by Scott Marshall Smith. Sony opens it August 22 — just in time for kickoff around the country. Here’s the trailer:
EXCLUSIVE: Laura Dern (Enlightened) has joined the cast of Ramin Bahrani‘s 99 Homes opposite Andrew Garfield and Michael Shannon. Garfield plays Dennis Nash, an unemployed contractor whose family is evicted during the economic crisis. In order to get his home back he goes to work for the realtor who evicted him (Shannon) who teaches Dennis the legal and illegal ins and outs of the foreclosure game. Oscar-nominated Dern will play Lynn Nash, Dennis’s widowed mother who raised him and his nine-year-old son Connor. The New Orleans shoot is underway. Dern will appear next in Fox 2000′s The Fault In Our Stars and Fox Searchlight’s Wild. Dern is repped by CAA, Untitled Entertainment, and Gang, Tyre, Ramer & Brown.
EXCLUSIVE: Maybe the Oscar nominated actress has a thing for movies with “wild” in the title. Laura Dern was in Wild At Heart back in 1990 and now she’s joining WildwithReese Witherspoon. Dern has been added to the cast of the Nick Hornby-scripted adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s best-selling 2012 memoir. The actress will play the mother to Witherspoon’s lead. Still dealing with the death of her mother years before, drug use and a collapsed marriage, Witherspoon’s character decides to walk the 1000-mile Pacific Crest Trail alone in a search for meaning in her life. Jean-Marc Vallée, who also helmed the upcoming Matthew McConaughey-starrer Dallas Buyers Club, is directing the Fox Searchlight pic. Wild started filming last week in Oregon. Laura Dern is repped by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and attorney Kevin Marks with Gang, Tyre, Ramer & Brown.
Her HBO series was cancelled in March, but Laura Dern has booked her next gig. The Oscar nominee and three-time Golden Globe winner has signed for the ensemble drama Strings, whose cast includes Maria Bello, Lucas Till, Tom Everett Scott and Josh Duhamel. Dern will play a woman who has not recovered from the death of her oldest son, a soldier. Production on first-time director Daniel Duran’s film is underway in Canada.
EXCLUSIVE: The Weinstein Company has won a quiet but fevered bidding battle for worldwide distribution rights to the untitled next film by Paul Thomas Anderson. The film begins production June 13, with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix so far set to star. Megan Ellison is financing. It is Anderson’s first trip behind the camera since There Will Be Blood.
Hoffman and Phoenix are locked. As for the actresses, I’m told that Anderson is eyeing such women as Madisen Beaty (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) for a role, with Amy Adams, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo‘s Lena Endre and Laura Dern also mentioned as actresses Anderson is interested in. The auction was held at CAA headquarters late last week, with Fox Searchlight also squarely in the mix.
This is the project that Anderson has worked on for a long time, once under the title The Master. He has greatly overhauled the script and now, Hoffman stars as a man who returns after witnessing the horrors of WWII and tries to rediscover who he is in post-war America. He creates a belief system, something that catches on with other lost souls. The film is fully financed by Ellison’s Annapurna banner. At a time when the implosion of the indie film marketplace made pricey auteur films so hard to finance, Ellison has emerged as something of a godsend to the small group of auteurs she is working with. She’s enabled Anderson to make the movie at or near the $35 million budget the film was going to cost back when Universal stepped away. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: There is a saying that you’ve got to be an Oscar winner to get to direct an HBO pilot these days: look at Martin Scorsese (Boardwalk Empire), Alexander Payne (Hung), Bill Condon (Tilda) and Kathryn Bigelow (The Miraculous Year). Now you may need an Oscar statuette to be an episodic director on the pay cable channel too. The Silence of the Lambs director Jonathan Demme has been tapped to direct two episodes of HBO’s upcoming Mike White/Laura Dern comedy series Enlightened. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: In a last-minute recasting, Timm Sharp hasjoined HBO’s upcoming Mike White/Laura Dern comedy series Enlightened as a regular. The single-camera comedy stars Dern as a self-destructive woman who has a spiritual awakening and decides to live an enlightened life, which creates havoc at home and work. UTA-repped Sharp will play her new boss when she returns to work. He replaces Mos Def, who was originally cast in the role but exited over deal issues. Undeclared alum Sharp, who most recently co-starred on Fox’s ‘Till Death, has been in business with HBO before, doing an arc on Six Feet Under and co-starring in the 2008 pilot 1%. Filming on Enlightened started today in the Los Angeles area, though Sharp’s role does not start shooting for another 10 days or so.
EXCLUSIVE: Mos Def has joined HBO’s upcoming Mike White/Laura Dern comedy series Enlightened as a regular. The single-camera comedy stars Dern as a self-destructive woman who has a spiritual awakening and decides to live an enlightened life, which creates havoc at home and work. Mos Def will play her new boss when she returns to work. This marks Mos Def’s first full-time series gig. He recurred on Comedy Central’s Chapelle’s Show and recently did a memorable guest stint on Fox’s House. At HBO, he starred in the 2004 movie Something the Lord Made, which earned him an Emmy nomination.