Emile Hirsch was on Late Night with Conan O’Brien last night, to promote the cattle-prod to the senses that is Speed Racer. No matter that it’s a $100 million-plus movie; Hirsch still only pulled one segment, which made for a careening anecdotal ride, as he recounted his discovered-in-rerun love for the original cartoon (he’d watch while eating cereal at his dad’s, using A&W Root Beer instead of milk), the movie’s Berlin shoot (including a trailer misunderstanding in which a production assistant mistakenly inferred that Hirsch was/is gay), and audience reaction to the movie. Nothing about Larry/Lana Wachowski’s sexual reassignment surgery, though. Hmmm. Overall, good times, and a pretty smooth sales job — no sweaty desperation or shown seams.
So according to Screen International, a sequel to Richard Kelly’s surreal, quasi-apocalyptic 2001 cult sensation Donnie Darko will begin shooting in Los Angeles on May 18. Entitled S. Darko, the movie will find Daviegh Chase reprising her role as Donnie’s younger sister, Samantha; other cast includes Gossip Girl‘s Ed Westwick (also currently on screens as the jerky older brother in Son of Rambow), Step Up 2 the Streets‘ Briana Evigan and The Invisible‘s Justin Chatwin. The story allegedly picks up seven years after the first film, when Samantha and her best friend Corey, both now 18, find themselves plagued by bizarre visions while on a road trip to
Chris Fisher, who previously co-wrote and helmed Rampage: The Hillside Strangler Murders and Cuba Gooding, Jr.‘s corrupt cop drama Dirty, will direct. “I’m a great admirer of Richard Kelly’s film and hope to create a similar world of blurred fantasy and reality,” says Fisher. Producers have spoken to Kelly, about the project but he is not involved in any official capacity at this stage. To my mind this is both amusing and kind of head-shakingly ridiculous at the same time — a sad attempt at recapturing unbottled magic instead of, you know, actually searching for great unproduced scripts.
Will Ferrell’s proudly lewd period piece basketball comedy Semi-Pro didn’t exactly light up the box office earlier this year, but he’s going even further back in time for director Brad Silberling’s big screen adaptation of Land of the Lost, which he’s shooting this summer for a release next year. “(Costar) Danny McBride and I have been replaced, we’re totally CG characters now,” says Ferrell, jokingly. “But the adventure part of the movie is the straight man to the comedy that we’re doing. It’s actually kind of a perfect backdrop, because you have yet to see that kind of movie with people running throughout it, and realistic looking danger and stakes, and (comedic) comments the whole way through.” He’s right, in a way… I guess Alone in the Dark doesn’t really count.
So a day after an interview for a forthcoming piece with Uwe Boll in which the German filmmaker jokingly talked about the possibility of adapting the videogame Bioshock comes word, via Variety, that Gore Verbinski — he of the bloated Pirates of the Caribbean franchise — has signed to bring the hit videogame to the big screen, in a big deal for Universal. Bioshock publisher Take-Two Interactive is getting a multi-million-dollar advance against gross points on the picture, believed to be the biggest videogame deal since 2005, when Microsoft scored $5 million against 10 percent of the gross for the since abandoned big screen adaptation of the best-selling Halo series. Aviator scribe John Logan, meanwhile, is in talks to pen the Bioshock screenplay, presumably without consulting Boll.