EXCLUSIVE: After wrapping Joe Wright’s Pan picture in London, Rooney Mara will head for the Jim Sheridan-helmed The Secret Scripture. The drama, about a 100-year-old woman named Roseanne who recounts her life in mental institutions in a secret memoir, is gearing up for a September shoot in Ireland. Jessica Chastain was previously attached to star alongside Vanessa Redgrave, but now Mara will play the younger Roseanne, who survives a traumatic childhood only to see her life utterly changed by a vindictive Catholic priest. Pic reunites Sheridan with his My Left Foot producer Noel Pearson and is adapted by Johnny Ferguson from Sebastian Barry’s 2008 novel of the same name. Rooney is also currently developing A House In The Sky with Annapurna Pictures, which she’ll star in and produce. She’s repped by WME and Management 360.
Annapurna Pictures has optioned A House In The Sky, Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout’s memoir about her 2008 abduction by rebel terrorists in Somalia, with aims to develop the project as a starring vehicle for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo‘s Rooney Mara.
The New York Times bestselling memoir tracks Lindhout’s 15 months in captivity and the psychology, motivations, and desperate extremism of her captors who kept the 27-year-old reporter in chains, nearly starved, and subjected to abuse including torture and rape. Lindhout was taken at gunpoint in Mogadishu in August 2008 along with Australian photojournalist Nigel Brennan, translator Abdifatah Mohammed Elmi, and two drivers while en route to conduct interviews at a refugee camp. While Elmi and the drivers were released in January of 2009, Lindhout and Brennan weren’t freed until their families paid ransom in November of that year after the two had spent 460 days in captivity.
Lindhout later turned her experience into A House In The Sky, co-written by Sara Corbett. Mara and her team found the book and brought it to Annapurna, whose Megan Ellison will produce alongside Mara.
EXCLUSIVE: Fox is in talks with American Hustle scribe Eric Warren Singer to adapt the Jason Matthews espionage book Red Sparrow for Chernin Entertainment and Film Rites to produce. They have David Fincher and Rooney Mara circling to re-team for the first time since The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. The film will be produced by Chernin Entertainment and Film Rites’ Steve Zaillian and Garrett Basch. Zaillian wrote that 2011 adaptation of the Stieg Larsson novel.
This is early days, because Singer will have to adapt the book, but with the interest from Fincher and Mara, they have reason to move quickly. The story is set in present-day Russia, and Mara would play Russian intelligence officer Dominika Egorova, who struggles to survive in the post-Soviet intelligence jungle. Ordered against her will to become a “Sparrow,” a trained seductress in the art of ‘sexpionage,’ Dominika is assigned to operate against Nathaniel Nash, a young CIA officer who handles the Agency’s most important Russian mole. The two begin a relationship that puts both of them, and a network of spies, in grave danger. Dominika winds up seeking revenge against her soulless masters, and living a fatal double life after she is recruited by the CIA to ferret out a high-level traitor in Washington. This has been a hot project at the studio …
Rooney Mara is in negotiations to play Tiger Lily in Pan, Warner Bros‘ feature film being directed by Joe Wright from a Jason Fuchs script that serves as an origin story for Peter Pan. Hugh Jackman is already aboard to play Blackbeard and Garrett Hedlund is playing Captain Hook. It opens July 17, 2015. In the original story, Tiger Lily is the princess of a Native American tribe living in Neverland. Mara kicked off production today in Cincinnati on the Todd Haynes pic Carol opposite Cate Blanchett. The Weinstein Company acquired the drama about the burgeoning relationship between two very different women in 1950s New York based on the Patricia Highsmith novel. Kyle Chandler and Sarah Paulson co-star.
The Weinstein Company acquired Carol at the tail end of Cannes this year. At the time, Mia Wasikowska was attached to star opposite Cate Blanchett in the story of a burgeoning relationship between two very different women in 1950s New York. Wasikowska is no longer in the mix, and Rooney Mara has become attached to the role of a young woman working in a department store and hoping for a better life. Blanchett is playing a wife trapped in a loveless marriage who’s desperate to break free but fearful of losing her daughter in the process. Far From Heaven helmer Todd Haynes is directing the drama that’s based on the novella The Price Of Salt by The Talented Mr Ripley author Patricia Highsmith. Phyllis Nagy (Mrs Harris) penned the adaptation. Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley of Number 9 Films are producing with co-financing from Flim4. Christine Vachon’s Killer Films will co-produce. HanWay Films is handling international sales and also has deals in place with eOne in Canada, Icon in Australia and TF1 in France. Shooting starts in spring next year. Blanchett is coming off of a highly praised turn in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine. Mara will next be seen in Spike Jonze’s Her and Stephen Daldry’s Trash. She’s repped by WME and Management 360.
EXCLUSIVE: The hacker from The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and the President from The West Wing have joined Working Title’s Trash. Martin Sheen and Rooney Mara are set for the Stephen Daldry-directed film that Richard Curtis adapted from Andy Mulligan’s 2010 novel. Sheen will play Father Juilliard, and Mara will play Olivia, an NGO worker, in the tale of three poverty-stricken boys (played by newcomers Rickson Tevez, Eduardo Luis and Gabriel Weinstein) who discover something unusual, mysterious and dangerous in a city dump in the Third World-set story. Elysium’s Wagner Moura and Os Maias’ Selton Mello have also been cast in the movie, from Working Title Films, PeaPie Films and 02 Filmes. It is scheduled to start production in Rio de Janeiro early next month. Working Title co-chairs Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are producing with PeaPie’s Kris Thykier. Universal will distribute the film globally when it comes out in May 2014. The studio is also bringing out Curtis’ About Time with Working Title on November 1 this year. Sheen is repped by ICM Partners; Mara is repped by WME and Management 360.
EXCLUSIVE: Management 360 has signed Rooney Mara, who is coming into her own after breakout turns in The Social Network and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Mara continues to be repped by WME. She followed those films by starring with Channing Tatum, Jude Law and Catherine Zeta-Jones in the Steven Soderbergh-directed Side Effects and most recently in Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, which premiered at Sundance and will be released later this year. There is still every hope she’ll reprise her role as goth heroine Lisbeth Salander, as Andrew Kevin Walker is working on a rewrite of that script for Sony. She got an Oscar nomination for her first turn in that role. Mara next stars in the Spike Jonze-directed Her, and she stars with Ryan Gosling and Michael Fassbender in the new Terrence Malick film.
EXCLUSIVE: Wind and rain have been sweeping the Croisette but Cassian Elwes says, “I feel like I’m on fire.” The former WMA head of independent film who’s now producing and packaging indies has skin in the game in Cannes with Lawless, which he exec produced and which screens tonight in competition And, he produced Lee Daniels’ much-buzzed The Paperboy which premieres next week. Elwes will screen it for select buyers on Tuesday. Elwes also tells me foreign sales are starting on Ain’t Them Bodies Saints via The Weinstein Co. David Lowery is writing and directing the contemporary Bonnie And Clyde-esque picture with Rooney Mara, Ben Foster and Casey Affleck attached. James Johnston, Toby Halbrooks, Amy Kaufman, Lars Knudsen, Jay Van Hoy and Elwes are producing.
Working with Werner Herzog for the first time, Elwes is also prepping Queen Of The Desert. The picture, he says, is like Lawrence Of Arabia but with a woman. It’s based on Gertrude Bell, the English writer, archaeologist and cartographer who mapped Iraq and Jordan in the early 1900s. Naomi Watts is attached. Shooting on Queen Of The Desert is expected to begin in the fall. Elwes is producing with Nick Raslan. Elwes, who recently teamed with Evolution Entertainment principal Mark Burg to launch Evolution Independent, made 7 movies last year. He expects to do 8 this year. “I’m totally driven,” he says, “I’m …
BREAKING: David Lowery has written and will direct Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, a contemporary story in the vein of Bonnie And Clyde, with Rooney Mara, Ben Foster and Casey Affleck attached to star. Lowery wrote and directed the short Pioneers, which won the Grand Jury Award at the 2011 Grand Jury Award at 2011 SXSW after premiering at Sundance. Lowery developed the feature at the January 2011 Sundance Writers Lab. James Johnston, Toby Halbrooks, Amy Kaufman, Lars Knudsen and Jay Van Hoy are producing. Lowery has signed with WME and WME Global is repping the film, and Evolution Independent’s Cassian Elwes is lining up the financing.
An Education producers Finola Dwyer and Amanda Posey have attached Rooney Mara to their upcoming adaptation of Colm Toibin’s novel Brooklyn. Nick Hornby has penned the script about a girl from a small Irish town who must decide between two cities and two men. Dwyer and Posey tell me they are currently in discussions with directors and are eyeing a spring 2013 shoot. The $20 million-$25 million pic reteams the producers with Hornby, who also adapted An Education. Posey also produced the adaptation of Hornby’s novel Fever Pitch a few years back. And, Dwyer and Posey are nearing a shooting start on another Hornby adaptation, A Long Way Down, which Pascal Chaumeil is directing. Toni Collette, Emile Hirsch and Pierce Brosnan star in that film with a 4th cast member soon to be announced. Hanway is handling international sales on A Long Way Down with a September start date planned. After producing An Education together, Dwyer and Posey tell me they wanted to formalize their partnership and are now developing projects under their Wildgaze banner. Separately, Dwyer is currently in post on Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut Quartet. Mara is repped by WME.
EXCLUSIVE: Open Road is setting a February 8, 2013 release date for Bitter Pill, the film that Steven Soderbergh began shooting in New York. The film stars Rooney Mara, Jude Law, Channing Tatum, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Vinessa Shaw. Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Gregory Jacobs and Scott Z. Burns are producing a script that Burns wrote. Endgame financed the film.
Lisbeth Salander, misanthropic Watson to Mikael Blomkvist’s investigative journalist Sherlock Holmes in Stieg Larsson’s novel The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, is by nature a rule-breaker. Look no further than her day job as a hacker; a means of assaulting the society that scarred her. To get Lisbeth to jump off the page, it required an actress with both an adolescent punkish attitude as well as a glacial resilience. Furthermore, like Noomi Rapace who originated the part in the original Swedish trilogy, the role required a starlet whose image wouldn’t cloud moviegoers’ perception of the character’s unorthodoxy (reasons why such Salander candidates as Natalie Portman or Scarlett Johansson were passed over for Sony’s Stateside remake). Director David Fincher’s expectations were smashed by Rooney Mara, the straight-laced girl he cast to reject Jesse Eisenberg’s Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network. Through a half-dozen screen tests Mara proved her worth to Fincher and eventually bowled over Sony’s reticence. Mara certainly has gotten the town’s attention, landing a role in Terrence Malick’s upcoming Lawless as well as best actress Golden Globe and Oscar nominations for the role. AwardsLine’s Anthony D’Alessandro interviewed Mara.
AWARDSLINE: Did you know someone like Lisbeth Salander growing up?
MARA: No, I don’t think anyone does. That’s what’s great about her: She’s unlike anyone you’ve seen or read about before.
AWARDSLINE: When you started auditioning for David Fincher, did …
EXCLUSIVE: In her first lead role since her Oscar-nominated turn in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Rooney Mara has just committed to starring in Side Effects, the Steven Soderbergh-directed thriller. Mara will replace Blake Lively in a film that also stars Jude Law, Channing Tatum and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Mara plays Emily Hawkins, a sexy but unsettled young woman who is taking serious amounts of prescription drugs to deal with anxiety and depression surrounding the pending release of her husband from prison.
Scott Z. Burns wrote the script, and Open Road will distribute in the U.S. It looked like Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures would be financier, but I have been hearing that is a bit shaky. Greg Jacobs and Lorenzo di Bonaventura are producing with Burns. Shooting begins in April.
Since her breakout performance as Lisbeth Salander, Mara has been courted for several major roles, including the female lead in the Kathryn Bigelow film about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden. That film clashed with her promotional schedule on Dragon Tattoo. Mara is currently in Tokyo promoting the film. She is repped by WME and attorney Neil Meyer.
Monica Corcoran is contributing to Deadline’s Golden Globe coverage.
It wasn’t the best of dresses or the worst of dresses. Rather, this year’s red carpet at the Golden Globes felt more like a Baltimore debutante ball than a ribald Hollywood awards show. Updos didn’t crest like tsunamis, diamonds seemed to be hibernating, and the only cleavage worth ogling came compliments of Sofia Vergara and Salma Hayek.
If nothing else, a nude dress contrasts well with the red carpet. But a bevy of blush gowns hardly induces fashion envy. Charlize Theron, Angelina Jolie, Kristen Wiig and Kate Beckinsale all chose the tame epidermis hue, though Jolie’s slash of crimson at the neckline of her Atelier Versace gown — like a gash to her clavicle — certainly added Shakespearean drama. Purple, too, made a popular showing among nominees like Octavia Spencer, Shailene Woodley, Julianna Margulies and Emma Stone. (The royal color has been heralded as the “it” shade for spring.) Metallics, an awards-show favorite and a shortcut to glamour, turned up on Diane Lane (pictured right), Madonna, Lea Michele and Nicole Richie. Lane’s gilded Reem Acra aced best dress; Michele’s risque molten silver Marchesa didn’t work because the young actress tried to outshine it. Shades of blue — from navy to cerulean — also proved a popular choice. Jodie Foster, bedecked in a beaded teal Giorgio Armani gown with a strapless corset and a cinched waist, looked feminine and unflappable.
As for skin, there were few plunging necklines. Sigh. Jolie, Jessica Biel and Viola Davis relied on center or side-slits to bare a bit of gam, and it was much appreciated. Rooney Mara’s tough-girl-next-door black Nina Ricci offered glimpses of her skim milk torso, with its bondage-like chiffon cut outs. Glee’s Dianna Agron and Michele competed for squint-worthy exhibitionism with their laser-cut gowns, but neither quickened my pulse. When it came to jewels, oversized earrings stole the show. FYI: If the unemployment rate hovers at 8.5%, stars tend to wisely eschew the quail egg-sized diamonds and blinding ruby chokers. Then, there’s Madonna. The best original song in a motion picture winner wore $2.5 million worth of Neil Lane gems, including half a dozen diamond and platinum cuff bracelets. Material girl, indeed.
In the end, I say, “all hail Tilda Swinton.” The statuesque fashion-forward icon — with the arm span of a yeti — didn’t disappoint in an ice blue Haider Ackerman skirt suit with strong, sharp shoulders. The red carpet always seems to part for Swinton and she deserves it.
Here’s the list of who wore who:
One of the last pieces of this year’s increasingly hot Best Actress race puzzle fell into place this week as The Weinstein Company unveiled Meryl Streep’s The Iron Lady at an exclusive media screening Tuesday night at the Warner Bros Screening Room in New York and Thursday morning for a handful of journalists at the 10-seat Weinstein Co. screening room at their new offices in Beverly Hills. Deadline was represented on both coasts. If there was any question about Streep’s viability as a major Oscar contender again this year, her performance as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher will erase all doubts. Again she is extraordinary, absolutely capturing the essence of Thatcher in every way, but is particularly powerful in those scenes depicting her enveloping dementia. She shows a poignant side, not really known about this woman who rose to the top of an exclusive men’s club and triumphed for nearly 12 years in the top job in her country. Jim Broadbent as her husband Dennis also has his moments but the film, expertly directed by Mamma Mia’s Phyllida Lloyd, belongs to Meryl. Even in England where Thatcher is sooooo well known and dissected, both early reviews in The Guardian and Daily Telegraph are singing her praises.
EXCLUSIVE: Jason Clarke is the first actor set for the Kathryn Bigelow-directed drama about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden for Sony Pictures and Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures. An elite group of actors is being courted for the ensemble. I’m told that Clarke–who stars in the Ellison-produced The Wettest County in the World and is playing the gas station owner George Wilson in the Baz Luhrmann-directed The Great Gatsby–will play a terrorist hunter in service of the U.S. efforts to hunt Bin Laden. Also being discussed for roles are Tom Hardy (who also stars in Wettest County), Jennifer Ehle (Contagion), Guy Pearce (who starred in Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker), Idris Elba, Rooney Mara (upcoming Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and Nina Arianda (Midnight In Paris). The plan is to start production early next year, so availability could be an issue for some of the actors. Mark Boal wrote the script and is producing with Ellison and Greg Shapiro.
AFM: FilmNation Unveils Back To Back Terrence Malick Films ‘Lawless’ And ‘Knight Of Cups,’ With Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale And Cate Blanchett
(Los Angeles, CA) November 2, 2011 – FilmNation Entertainment is continuing their relationship with acclaimed director Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life, The Thin Red Line) and handling international sales and distribution on his next two films. LAWLESS will star Ryan Gosling (Drive, The Ides of March) and boasts a supporting cast that includes Academy Award Winners Christian Bale (The Dark Knight, The Flowers of War), Cate Blanchett (The Hobbit, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) plus Rooney Mara (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Social Network) and Haley Bennett (Marley & Me, The Haunting of Molly Hartley).
The second film, KNIGHT OF CUPS, will star Christian Bale with a supporting cast including Cate Blanchett and Isabel Lucas (Immortals, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen). Both films are currently in pre-production and will shoot back-to-back in 2012. Sarah Green (Untitled Terrence Malick Project, The Tree of Life, The New World, Take Shelter, Mud) and Nicolas Gonda (Untitled Terrence Malick Project, The Tree of Life, The New World) will serve as the producers on both films with FilmNation Entertainment handling international sales during this week’s AFM.
Deadline told you Monday that Warren Beatty was getting behind the camera for the first time since Bulworth. Paramount and Beatty are keeping details under wraps, but here’s what I’ve heard: He will play Howard Hughes, but it’s not really a biopic; part of the plot involves an affair he had with a young woman in the later years of his life. I’ve heard that he’s going top shelf for the ensemble cast he is putting together. Here is who he’s meeting with: Andrew Garfield, Alec Baldwin, Annette Bening, Shia La Beouf, Jack Nicholson, Evan Rachel Wood and Rooney Mara. Beatty has wanted to play Hughes forever. The courtship of Baldwin is particularly intriguing, since in Martin Scorsese’s superb Howard Hughes movie The Aviator, Baldwin played Hughes’ main adversary, Pan Am World Airways founder Juan Trippe. We’ll see which actors end up making the movie, but it certainly sounds like this project that Beatty wrote and has ruminated on for years is going to happen in a most ambitious way.
Super 8’s $37 million opening weekend was a surprise given last week’s soft tracking numbers that rival marketing execs attributed to JJ Abrams’ insistence on keeping plot reveals — and the creature — out of the TV spots. Those skeptics might argue Super 8 could have posted a larger opening weekend with a more revealing campaign, but it is nice to see a filmmaker — and the studio that backed him — vindicated in their decision to preserve the moviegoing experience by not dishing all the reveals. It’s too bad Abrams wasn’t advising disgraced Congressman Anthony Weiner, who also would have benefited by fighting the temptation to unveil the creature.