EXCLUSIVE: Jessica Chastain is in talks to star with Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway in Interstellar, the next film that Christopher Nolan will direct. She will play the third lead, I’m told, and this is a great follow to her Oscar-nominated turn in Zero Dark Thirty. Quite a cast Nolan is cooking up; Hathaway won the Oscar for Les Miserables, and McConaughey is on a run himself. Not much is known about the specific log line (Nolan and cohorts work under the cone of silence) and that includes casting. I was able to break the news about McConaughey (he confirmed it a week later), and also Hathaway. The film is a co-production between Paramount and Warner Bros and was put in motion by Lynda Obst, who commissioned the original treatment. Steven Spielberg came aboard in 2006, when Paramount owned DreamWorks, and after the filmmaker became intrigued by Caltech physicist and relativity expert Kip S. Thorne and his scientific theory that wormholes exist and can be used for time travel. Spielberg set Jonah Nolan to write the script, which made it easy for Christopher Nolan to come aboard after Spielberg left the project. After all, the Nolan siblings have a collaborative track record, with Jonah hatching the short story that became Christopher’s first hit, 2000′s Memento, and following that with two Batfilms and The Prestige. Christopher Nolan signed on in January to write a script that merged an original idea of his with the script that Jonah wrote. The ambition is a film that will depict a heroic interstellar voyage to the farthest borders of our scientific understanding. Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas are producing with Lynda Obst. Jordan Goldberg is joining as exec producer alongside Thorne, who’ll remain on as technical consultant. CAA and Mosaic rep Chastain.
This was a long-coveted project for actors and directors even before Matthew McConaughey came aboard in May 2011 to star alongside Hilary Swank (Jennifer Garner eventually came on to take the latter role). McConaughey said he lost almost 40 pounds to tell the real-life story of Ron Woodruff, who fought the U.S. medical and pharmaceutical companies after he was diagnosed with HIV in the mid-1980s, when the disease was still mostly without a public face. Focus plans a release for Dallas Buyers Club in the second half of this year — which usually means an awards-season slot. Here’s the release
NEW YORK, April 23rd, 2013 – Dallas Buyers Club, currently in post-production, has been acquired by Focus Features for domestic theatrical release in the second half of 2013. The company has also acquired Latin American rights to the feature. Focus CEO James Schamus and Focus president Andrew Karpen made the announcement today. A Truth Entertainment production, Dallas Buyers Club is produced by Robbie Brenner and Rachel Winter. Spirit Award winner Matthew McConaughey stars in the fact-based drama for director Jean-Marc Vallée (The Young Victoria). The film’s original screenplay is by Craig Borten and Melissa Wallack.
In Dallas Buyers Club, Mr. McConaughey portrays real-life Texas electrician Ron Woodroof, an ordinary man who found himself in a life-or-death battle with the medical establishment and pharmaceutical companies. In 1986, Ron was blindsided by being diagnosed as HIV-positive and given 30 days to live. With the U.S. still internally divided over how to combat the virus and restricting medications, Ron grabbed hold of non-toxic alternative treatments from all over the world by means both legal and illegal. Seeking to avoid government sanctions against selling non-approved medicines and supplements, he established a “buyers club,” which fellow HIV-positive people could join for access to his supplies.
Matthew McConaughey has confirmed he’ll star in Christopher Nolan‘s Interstellar for Paramount and Warner Bros, which Deadline told you exclusively a week ago. The actor doesn’t say much about the role, just that he’s doing it. Having veered from the rom-com, he’s having a nice second wind to his career. Now, you might think it douchey of me to feel the need to remind that Deadline broke the story, but there are so many online sites creating businesses by swiping our stories, many with no credit, that we need to drop reminders of who’s putting in the work and turning over the hard ground. These aggregating sites are getting more brazen. The one that has been grating on me lately is Slashfilm. I don’t see a lick of original reporting, and I don’t think that site would exist without Deadline or the work of trade reporters like Borys Kit and Justin Kroll.
EXCLUSIVE: Here’s an intriguing casting possibility to chew on going into the holiday weekend. I’m told Christopher Nolan has offered the male lead of his next film, Interstellar, to Matthew McConaughey. The character’s name is Cooper and while there is no deal yet, who says no to Nolan? The project is a co-production between Paramount and Warner Bros. Interstellar was originally set up in 2006 by Steven Spielberg, when Paramount owned DreamWorks, and after Spielberg became intrigued by Caltech physicist and relativity expert Kip S. Thorne and his scientific theory that wormholes exist and can be used for time travel. It was Spielberg who set Jonah Nolan to write the script, which made it easy for Christopher Nolan to come aboard after Spielberg left the project. After all, the Nolan siblings have a collaborative track record, with Jonah hatching the short story that became Christopher’s first hit Memento, and following that with two Batfilms and The Prestige. Christopher Nolan signed on in January to write a script that merged an original idea of his with the script that Jonah wrote. The ambition is a film that will depict a heroic interstellar voyage to the farthest borders of our scientific understanding. Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas are producing with Lynda Obst. Jordan Goldberg is joining as exec producer alongside Thorne, who’ll remain on as technical consultant.
On its fourth day, the Sundance Film Festival is wall to wall with some of Hollywood’s best known actors and actresses — and we don’t mean the ones who show up just to party hop. While the festival can be a great launching pad for emerging filmmakers, Park City has never been shy about letting the already well known show their wares there too. It was created by Robert Redford after all. This year sees a number of famous faces and names get behind the camera with new films. As buyers begin to dig in, expect to see these marquee names generating some serious interest as they play out of their regular position. And then there’s the plethora of Oscar winners and nominees, blockbuster and TV stars and indie superstars in front of the camera — check out our comprehensive list below.
James Franco – Executive Producer, kink; Co-director, Interior. Leather Bar. - Actor, director, conceptual artist, grad student and failed Oscar host, Franco wears many hats. This year, he’s adding producer and co-director for two separate films for Sundance. Franco produced kink, a documentary directed by Christina Voros about the Internet’s biggest producer of BDSM. Franco also co-directed Interior. Leather Bar with Travis Matthews. The film seeks to re-create the 40 minutes of Gay S&M footage rumored to be cut from 1980’s Cruising staring Al Pacino to avoid an X rating. Sure the sexual subject matter of both films is similar but Franco’s ambition is wide ranging. Franco also makes an appearance in front of the camera in Interior. Leather Bar and Lovelace.
Alicia Keys – Executive Producer, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete - The multi-platinum singer/songwriter is no stranger to cinema. More than a few films feature her tunes on their soundtracks and Keys was in front of the camera in 2006’s Smokin’ Aces. However, this Sundance is Keys’ debut as a producer. Directed George Tillman Jr. and starring Skylan Brooks, Jeffrey Wright, Jennifer Hudson and Anthony Mackie, the coming of age film could be the start of a whole new career for Keys.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt – Director/Writer, Don Jon’s Addiction – He sings, he dances, he starred in The Dark Knight Rises and Looper last year, and now Gordon-Levitt slips into the director’s role on the comedy Don Jon’s Addiction. The actor’s directorial debut, which he also wrote the script for, stars Gordon-Levitt himself as a lady’s man who begins seeking a more fulfilling emotional life. Scarlett Jonansson, Julianne Moore, Brie Larson and Tony Danza co-star in the film.
Dave Grohl – Director/Producer, Sound City - No stranger to movie soundtracks, the Foo Fighters frontman and former Nirvana drummer has now moved into the director’s chair with his debut documentary Sound City. Debuting early in the Festival, the film is about the famous Van Nuys studio where Nirvana, Neil Young, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Cheap Trick, Guns and Roses and others have recorded. Even before the Festival began, Gravitas Ventures acquired worldwide VOD to Grohl’s movie.
Julie Delpy/Ethan Hawke – Writers, Before Midnight - This one’s a bit of a cheat because the duo are actually on both sides of the camera at this year’s Sundance. Premiering tonight, the Richard Linklater directed Before Midnight sees Delpy and Hawke return to their roles as Jesse and Celine from 1995’s Before Sunrise and 2004’s Before Sunset. The onscreen duo also retuned to their off screen roles as writers. Like Before Sunset, which was nominated for a Best Adapted Screenplay, Delpy and Hawke crafted Before Midnight’s script with Linklater. This year marks the second time the trio have premiered their tale of the perpetually unfulfilled lovers to Sundance –Before Sunrise debuted at the Festival in 1995.
Writer-director Jeff Nichols’ third feature is screening at Sundance starting tomorrow. The tale which debuted last May at Cannes involves a pair of teenage boys who discover a boat wedged in a tree on an island in the Mississippi River. A drifter played by Matthew McConaughey intrudes and complications …
After being stuck in the rut of doing a series of high-paying major studio romantic comedies, Matthew McConaughey made a smart career switch and has been winning acclaim for one risky role after another in the last year. Beginning with his successful turn as The Lincoln Lawyer, the actor whose most significant recent awards talk had been as People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive suddenly turned out a surprising run of varied roles in disparate, edgy indie movies. There was his prosecutor in Bernie. Then there was a well-received pair of performances in Lee Daniels’ Southern potboiler The Paperboy and Jeff Nichols’ Mud that were both in the official competition in Cannes in May. Now he’s been nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards for his leading role in William Friedkin’s NC-17 Killer Joe and supporting turn as the veteran male stripper in Steven Soderbergh’s Magic Mike, a summertime hit that is also getting lots of Oscar buzz. When I talked to him recently, he looked gaunt and pale after losing 38 pounds to play an AIDS victim in his next project, The Dallas Buyers Club. McConaughey has clearly taken his career in fascinating new directions.
AwardsLine: You have been having a hell of a year. Really, one movie after another, and I don’t think you’ve stopped working. Have you had a day off?
McConaughey: Not many. I did five (films) in a row—the most I’ve ever done in a year were three. I remember telling my now wife, then girlfriend, that I’ve never had less than a month and a half to prepare. It scares the hell out of me. And she was like, “We’ll work it out.” I only had two weeks between a couple of them, and it (worked) out really well. Your mechanics are lubricated, you’re kind of flowing. The hard part is just dismissing the last character and moving into the next one. Each one scared me in a different way, and I hadn’t been scared in a while. But it’s that good kind of fear.
The slow recovery of the independent distribution business took a giant step at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, which featured a fast and furious flurry of big-money deals made for partially completed films whose sellers brought sizzle reels and …
EXCLUSIVE: The William Friedkin-directed black comedy Killer Joe will be released by LD Entertainment on July 27 with an NC-17 rating. The film received that rating in late February, and the decision was made after the distributor and filmmaker unsuccessfully went through the appeals process before deciding they didn’t want to change the ending.
An adaptation of the Tracy Letts play, Killer Joe is the first release by LD Entertainment after Mickey Liddell formed the distribution company late last year and hired veteran indie executive David Dinerstein to run it. It’s not the first time Friedkin turned in a cut of a film that drew a dreaded rating from the MPAA. While Friedkin tackled rough subject matter in films like The Exorcist and To Live And Die In L.A., he got an X-rating for the 1980 film Cruising, in which Al Pacino played a detective who goes undercover looking for a killer preying on gay men. Friedkin said he had to cut 40 minutes of that movie to get an R rating. But he won’t have to cut a frame of Killer Joe. LD Entertainment will release a trailer for the film tomorrow, and it will wear the NC-17 rating like a red badge of courage.
LOS ANGELES – October 27, 2011 – Gerard Butler, Sam Worthington and Matthew McConaughey will star in Freedom Films’ upcoming action thriller “Thunder Run” with Simon West set to direct, announced Brian Presley, CEO of Freedom Films, who will produce alongside Carissa Buffel and Kevin Matusow of Freedom Films and Jib Polhemus of The Graphic Film Company. Additional casting will begin in the next week. Hyde Park International has signed on for international sales.
“Thunder Run,” is an all CG 3-D action thriller based on the novel “Thunder Run – The Armored Strike to Capture Baghdad,” by Pulitzer Prize-winning correspondent David Zucchino. Adapting the story for the screen are Academy Award-winner Robert Port and Ken Nolan, screenwriter of “Black Hawk Down.” The Graphic Film Company will utilize proprietary facial-capture technology they used on West’s upcoming “Night of the Living Dead: Origins 3-D” along with the motion capture technology used in “AVATAR.”
As predicted here, Warner Bros completed its acquisition of domestic rights on the Steven Soderbergh-directed Magic Mike, which stars Alex Pettyfer and Channing Tatum in a Saturday Night Fever-type coming-of-age drama about a young exotic dancer who …