Monday, October 03, 2011

Arrested Development ... the rumor that still won't die gets new life

'It's true. We will do 10 episodes and the movie. Probably shoot them all together next summer for a release in early '13. VERY excited!"

Jason Bateman sets things in motion this weekend with that comment at a full-cast "Arrested Development" reunion arranged by the New Yorker Festival, but why in the world should fans of the show, who have been let down so many times in the past, believe any differently this time?

Well, we probably shouldn't. but this is the first time that I've heard talk of both an "Arrested Development" movie and some new episodes, too, so we should perhaps look a little closer. And in doing so, it seems there's some interesting financial backing, according to Deadline, that could really make it happen.

Per the website, which granted isn't always right, 20th Century TV, which co-produced "Arrested Development", has had talk with both Netflix and Showtime about bringing back the show, as Bateman teased, for 10 episodes that would eventually lead into the long-promised movie.

Still a remote possibility, but lord knows Netflix could use the good publicity along with some original programming, so we can at least file this in the keep-hope-a-little-more-alive file and keep our fingers crossed.

Except for that today, there's news about two of my very favorite directors, so let's just get right to it.

Actually, it's probably a bit strong to call Martin McDonagh one of my favorite directors since he's only made one movie I've managed to see (and two in total), but when that movie is "In Bruges," I think it's a fair leap to make.

If you haven't seen that extremely dark and equally funny little gem, I really can't recommend rentals much higher. The tale of two hitman uncomfortably hiding out on vacation stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, and "In Bruges" is the first movie I bought on Blu-ray.

And now comes word that CBS Films is in negotiations to co-finance and distribute another McDonagh film that would also star Farrell, "Seven Psychopaths," which sounds like it should be a lot of wicked fun.

Per, in the film, Marty (Farrell) a screenwriter struggling for inspiration for his script, 'Seven Psychopaths,' gets unwittingly drawn into the dangerous dog kidnapping schemes of his oddball friends Billy (Sam Rockwell) and Hans (Christopher Walken). And once the beloved Shih Tzu of the psychopathic gangster Charlie goes missing, Marty finds he's going to get all the inspiration he needs, as long as he can live to tell the tale...

I'm laughing at that already. Sounds like it's got more than a little Elmore Leonard thrown in, and with shooting apparently set to start this fall, definitely stay tuned for more on this as soon as I can find it.

There's also news about another of my favorites who's putting together his second film as a director, Charlie Kaufman. The first for which he didn't have Spike Jonze or Michel Gondry as a counterweight, "Synecdoche, NY," was a wonder that spun way out of control by the end, but still managed to be spellbinding.

This time out, he's just added Kevin Kline to a cast that already included Jack Black, Steve Carell and Nicolas Cage for "Frank or Francis," which definitely plays on themes of "Adaptation," for which Kaufman wrote the script.

This time out, per Variety, the "satire of Hollywood set to music" will "chronicle the back-and-forth between a movie director and an online blogger who delights in berating his cinematic talent."

Also per Variety, Black will play Francis, a blogger who reviews movies online. Carell is playing Frank, a filmmaker who is cheating on his wife, while Cage plays The Emcee, an actor famous for "commercial, high-concept films." Kline will play both Richard Waller, the brother of director Jonathan Waller, whose fictional film Hiroshima is the highest-grossing movie of all time, as well as Richard's Head, an animatronic head that helps Jonathan make a product that will have "the broadest possible appeal and zero artistic integrity."

Charlie Kaufman's mind is exactly my kind of twisted, and it seems like this time out he's keeping it slightly more conventional but probably more fun than with "Synecdoche," so I'm in for sure. Shooting for this starts in January.

And I'll leave you today with two tv-related videos, the first being the first five minutes of "American Horror Story," the new FX series from "Glee" creator Ryan Murphy that's set to premiere Wednesday at 10 p.m. The almost certainly campy haunted house tale stars the truly great Connie Britton (aka Tami Taylor), Dylan McDermott and somehow Jessica Lange too. I'm on the fence about whether or not to watch this one, but I'll at least watch the pilot, and perhaps like a few people who happen to stop by here today, will watch the first five minutes as soon as I finish this post. Enjoy.

And finally, here's the best clip from the first episode of "Saturday Night Live" I've bothered to stay up for and watch live in at least 10 years, starring Melissa McCarthy. They came up with several skits in which she shined, but this TCM spoof in which she played vaudeville bombshell Lulu Diamonds was the best. To say any more would just spoil it in case you haven't seen this yet, so I'll just say it's comedy bliss and leave it at that. Peace out.


Bob said...

You're the only other person I've seen with the same mentality as me on this "Arrested Development" thing. I ain't buying it yet. My 100 dollars have become 100 pennies before, ya know.
Really looking forward to more Martin McDonagh. Especially with Farrell and Sam Rockwell on board. I hope Brendan Gleeson and Ralph Fiennes will have a place in there as well.

Reel Fanatic said...

I'm thinking they will, Bob, since Farrell's on board ... I go back and watch In Bruges at least once a year or so, and it never gets old

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