Saturday, April 10, 2010

Who Should Be 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo'?

Noomi Rapace, Kristen Stewart, Carey Mulligan
Not since Kristen Stewart was tapped to play Bella Swan have bibliophiles expressed so much interest in which actress will play a beloved book heroine on the big screen as they have in the incarnation of Lisbeth Salander in an American version of the Swedish bestseller 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.' (Swedish actress Noomi Rapace won rave reviews playing Lisbeth in the foreign version.) Director David Fincher ('Se7en' ... Gwyneth Paltrow's head in a box ... gahhhh!) has reportedly signed on to Americanize the flick, which means that casting wars are about to ensue. reported this week that that Academy Award nominee Carey Mulligan and Bella Swan herself, Kristen Stewart, are vying for the role of the pouty, foul-mouthed bisexual hacker, who is often mistaken for a 14-year old girl.

All three are solid options, but are they the right one? Let's explore the merits of our possible Lisbeths.

Noomi Rapace -- Despite the reception the actress has received in the foreign language version of the movie (released in the States last month), American audiences are fickle with foreign crossovers. This book trilogy could turn into an action franchise that could be the next 'Bourne,' so you can bet studios will want an actress who can drive box office sales. "Personally, I wouldn't want to see Rapace play the same role again, as good as she was. But for those who haven't seen the original, it could work. Again, the material and the director will carry this dark, incredibly grim film into the marketplace. There are no strong young American actresses that are good enough, and also have a big enough name, to make a difference. The obstacle to Rapace being cast for American audiences, of course, is her accent. So no, I don't think she's the answer," says Jay Fernandez, Senior Film Editor for The Hollywood Reporter.
Kristen Stewart -- Salander is frequently described by the men who dislike her as a sourpuss, and if there is anything K-Stew can do well, it's wear a puss-face. Audiences who know her only as Bella Swan may find the transition to bisexual ass-kicker a tad difficult, but Stewart already proved she can go dark, stormy and bisexual in 'The Runaways.' "I've heard Kristen Stewart's name bandied about, and having seen her in 'Welcome to the Rileys,' where she plays a sex worker, I think she may be able to pull it off," Fernandez says. "But really, what young American actresses are there that can embody that kind of damaged, rage-filled, clever and indomitable role? None."

TDG Note: Personally, I think the biggest hurdle in Kristen winning this role is the whole timing of the movie.  Unless they start filming by early summer, there's no way she's going to be able to squeeze this in before Breaking Dawn starts filming in October/November.
Carey Mulligan -- Academy Award nominee Mulligan certainly proved her acting chops in 'Bad Education.' And even though she played a naive high school girl seduced by an older man, we think there's an edge beneath those pretty bangs. Plus, as gorgeous as she is, Mulligan could easily be mistaken for a 14-year old, as Salander is in the book.
Olivia Wilde -- Wilde's name hasn't been officially thrown into contention for the role yet, but we've been thinking for some time now that she could just be the next Angelina Jolie-type lady action hero and this would be a good place for her to start.

"There is something about Olivia Wilde's perfectly pale skin begging to be covered in crazy tattoos that immediately made me picture her as Salander when I was reading the book. Sure, she would need to wear flats the whole movie and the hair would need to be chopped and darkened with a hint of red, and sure, we want Salander to be a little grungy with a hint of 'Run Lola Run' grittiness to her, but if you are going to watch someone on the big screen for two hours, let's face it, you kinda want her to be strikingly beautiful underneath it all," says style and beauty expert 
Jenn Falik.
Mila Kunis -- OK, so maybe Mila is a little bit of a dark horse, but she looks good dirty, as we saw when she played opposite Denzel in 'The Book of Eli,' and we think she could also play scary. "She's likable and a kick-ass," says Sarah Ivens, founding editor of OK! magazine and author of 'No Regrets: 101 Fabulous Things to Do Before You're Too Old, Married or Pregnant.' While likability may seem anti-Salander, it does score points with audiences, particularly those who haven't read the book.
Megan Fox -- Screen siren Megan Fox seems the obvious commercial choice here, but given her track record for creating box office splashes that are critical failures, it's unlikely Fincher will go with her. She could work if they opt to make Salander a mute.


Top 10 Reasons To See 'The Runaways' (Besides The Fact That Kristen Rocks)


1. The music. Fans of The Runaways and Joan Jett are going to scream. (Not out loud, you’re in a movie theater!) Original versions of many Runaways songs are everywhere, and they sound awesome in a theater. Don’t rush out as soon as the credits roll. Stay until the last one, because if you don’t, you’re going to miss some great songs. I bounced and whispered along to the words. It would be nice to be able to see this movie in a room full of die-hards so I wouldn’t have to be so quiet.
2. Kristen Stewart. Kristen was born to be Joan Jett. One of my favorite Kristen scenes involves other characters talking in the foreground while Kristen’s Joan Jett is in the back of the room simply stretching and fidgeting. Kristen’s mannerisms as Joan are completely natural, and nothing seems like an afterthought or a put-on. Her singing and performances are authentic. Her voice does not match Joan’s tone-for-tone, but I didn’t want it to. I wanted to be able to hear Kristen’s inner Kristen-ness come through in her voice, and I did. A perfect sound-a-like performance would’ve been a slap in the face to everything The Runaways ever stood for. No one can honor Joan Jett’s individuality without first embracing her own. And Kristen definitely does. But there are a few things that Kristen does do spot-on, and they give me chills every time. A simple “How ya doin’?” gives me goosebumps.
3. Dakota Fanning. Dakota blew me away, pure and simple.  I can’t explain how without spewing a bunch of worn-out cliches, so I won’t. Her “Cherry Bomb” performance was brilliant. I wanted to clap and cheer with the crowd in the movie, but I couldn’t, so I just bounced up and down a lot. See #1.
4. The 1970’s. If you miss high-waist bell bottoms and polyester, this movie is for you. The film’s graininess puts you straight back to 1976. This is a great period film.
5. Stella Maeve. Sandy West’s story is the most tragic of all the Runaways, and is not depicted in the film in any detail. But every time Stella’s Sandy was on the screen I wanted to hug her. The pure joy she expressed while playing the drums was completely infectious, and I get the same feeling watching footage of the real thing. Read more about the real Sandy West HERE. Remember what I said earlier about talking to your kids? DO IT.
6. Hannah Marks. Hannah plays a friend of Joan’s, and she doesn’t have much screen time. But I thought she was cute.
7. Water guns and shower heads. *snicker*
8. Michael Shannon. Michael plays the creepy side of Kim Fowley well, but if you really pay attention, you can also see a bruised tenderness underneath. This film, as in real life, has no comic book villians. Just ordinary people, trying to be noticed in a world that ignores them. And succeeding.
9. The humor. Not everything in this movie is dark and depressing. I laughed out loud a lot, and so did the rest of the theater. Michael Shannon’s Kim Fowley delivers most of the funny lines, but the girls are funny too. See #7.
10. THE MUSIC. No, I didn’t get high and forget that I already mentioned this. You need to hear this music, and you need to hear it in a theater. Despite the drugs, despite the sex, and despite the truck-driver cussing, these girls COULD PLAY. They’ve written some of the best rock-n-roll songs in the world, and this movie does an excellent job of celebrating that. Joan Jett’s passion for music gave her the drive she needed to eventually kick booze and drugs. She has never lost her focus on her guitar, and this film portrays that very well. The Runaways, as in real life, has no comic book heroes. Just ordinary people, trying to be noticed in a world that ignores them. And succeeding.


New Pictures Of Rob On The Bel Ami Set Yesterday


Ashley Green Cast In 'Butter' Alongside Jennifer Garner, Starts Shooting In Lousiana Next Week

Ashley Greene - AP Photo
Yesterday was the "bittersweet" end to filming for Ashley Greene's Apparition. Or so she tweeted.
The tweet of finale bookends filming of this, the project that she raved about in Interview Magazine, as she announced the beginning of filming in the same fashion at the end of January.
Apparition is Greene's first headliner, and it helped to further tighten the relationship of theTwilight and Harry Potter crews by bringing in Tom Felton to star.
The end of Apparition filming, however, is not the end to Greene's present extra-Twilight occupation.
According to, Greene has just signed on for The Weinstein Company's Butter, co-starring Jennifer Garner, Kate Hudson, Rob Corddry, and Ty Burrell:

Ashley Greene ("The Twilight Saga") has joined The Weinstein Company comedy Butter. Jim Field Smith (She's Out of My League) will direct from a script by Jason Micallef.

Greene, who just wrapped shooting for 
The Apparition last week, joins Jennifer Garner, Kate Hudson, Ty Burrell and Rob Corddry in the film that starts shooting next week in Louisiana.
Butter follows a young orphan who, after being adopted by a Midwestern family, discovers she has an uncanny talent for butter-carving. She eventually finds herself up against the ambitious wife of the retired reigning champion in a town's annual butter-sculpting contest

Greene will play a rebellious high school teenager named Kaitlen Pickler.

Garner is also producing with Alissa Phillips and Mike De Luca.


MarieClaireUK Features Rob & Kristen's Fashion Highs & Lows

MarieClaireUK features Rob and Kristen's fashion highs and lows. I just focused on the highs here. Go check their "supposed" fashion mishaps and other style highs at MarieClaire







Which looks are your favorite?  Oscar Rob & Kristen would make quite the couple! ;)

Source via Source

Fearnet - Why Bill Condon Could Be Good for 'Breaking Dawn'

Bill Condon
Though it's not yet official, this week's news that Dreamgirls director Bill Condon has pulled into the lead to direct the remaining two films in the Twilight franchise has given us plenty of food for thought. What makes the Oscar-winning razzle-dazzle specialist a shoe-in to direct Breaking Dawnover other rumored contenders Sofia Coppola and Gus Van Sant?
Oscar Cred
Catherine Hardwicke had indie film respect (Twilight), Chris Weitz had slick CG epic filmmaking under his belt (New Moon), and David Slade seemed like a perfect genre director to bring the franchise into horror-thriller territory (Eclipse). But while each of the previous Twilight Saga directors has been well-suited to their respective adaptations in different ways, Condon brings with him a very important element that could help the franchise go out with a bang: his shiny Academy Award statuette, won in 1999 for writing the horror-related flick Gods and Monsters.
Condon notched another Oscar nomination for scripting 2002's Chicago, the film musical that effectively relaunched the musical genre in modern-day Hollywood. And even when he didn't directly receive Oscar nods or wins, his films have (Dreamgirls earned eight nominations and won two Academy Awards; Kinsey earned one nomination; and Gods and Monsters earned actors Ian McKellen and Lynn Redgrave their own respective nods). He also co-produced the 2009 Academy Awards telecast -- which, if we all recall, wasn't that well-received, but hey -- it's the Oscars!
Condon is a man who has an Oscar sheen about him, and that could elevate the two-part Breaking Dawn films beyond the realm of teenybopper fare. Summit wants Twilight to appeal to more than just the tween set, which Weitz's CG wolves didn't do and Slade's horror cred may not do come June -- and that means bringing in a touch of prestige.
Genre Experience
While Condon is best known for his more recent Oscar-caliber work (see above), a look back in his filmography reveals a surprising knack for genre fare that one might not otherwise expect from the man behind Chicago and Dreamgirls. After a career stint as a journalist, Condon entered showbiz as the screenwriter of 1981's low-budget horror spoof Strange Behavior (AKA Dead Kids), an Illinois-set Ozsploitation flick followed by a sci-fi sequel, Strange Invaders. He made his directorial debut a few years later with the 1987 Gothic thriller Sister, Sister and in 1995 helmed Candyman 2: Farewell to the Flesh (the one that reveals the Candyman's tragic origin story, involving a lynch mob, honey, and a swarm of bees).
A few years later, Condon left behind the horror fare to begin his better known period, starting with the critically-acclaimed Gods and Monsters -- a biopic of horror director James Whale (Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein). That film demonstrated Condon's knowledge of the horror genre and his ability to infuse it with humanistic storytelling, which will be key in adapting Breaking Dawn, a story that balances Bella Swan's involvement in the vampire and werewolf worlds with themes of marriage, family, and romance.
Sparkle of a Different Kind
Another of Condon's proven skills is the ability to wrangle large, ambitious productions and deliver polished products with mass appeal. Some may joke, but nobody REALLY expects Bill Condon'sBreaking Dawn to include musical numbers or jazz hands. That said, the expertise proven withDreamgirls -- a film with multiple sets, characters, and intimate dramatic arcs with large ramifications -- should give fans some measure of confidence. After all, Breaking Dawn's story is so over the top and its stakes so elevated that many of us have wondered how it could ever be filmed at all.
One can imagine that Condon could give the Twilight Saga the maturity it needs to bring the first films' teen angst sensibilities into the more adult realm that Bella Swan will quickly find herself in -- facing marriage, babies, and other new discoveries and enemies as the series draws to a close. If Condon can create a product that doesn't look like it's been made merely for the MTV crowd, but also for, well, their parents, the franchise might pull a much wider demographic than it has previously and, also important, earn critical respect.
What Remains to Be Seen
Though Breaking Dawn features relatively little action, it will require some level of CG and/or special effects, which is an area in which Condon is unproven. Though he can grandfather in the werewolf, wolf phasing, and vampire sparkling effects from New Moon and Eclipse (forget those horrid effects in the first film), Condon will also have to tackle characters and effects and new creatures that previous Twilight films and directors have not had to portray. And though I'll keep the specifics vague for those unfamiliar, these new effects will be very difficult to convincingly bring to the screen -- one in particular is invisible, and another biggie will simply be difficult to faithfully portray without risking a ratings battle.
That said, screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg has stated that said effects and events could be adapted within a PG-13 rating, and she's guided the entire franchise with fan-satisfying faithfulness thus far.
What do you think Twilighters? Will you give Bill Condon your vote of confidence, or do you have to wait and see proof that he's the right director for the job?


The Boston Globe Reviews 'The Runaways' - "Stewart Gives The Better Performance"

Kristen Stewart (left) plays guitarist Joan Jett and Dakota Fanning is singer Cherie Currie, two of the key members of the ’70s girl band the Runaways.
Kristen Stewart (left) plays guitarist Joan Jett and Dakota Fanning is singer Cherie Currie, two of the key members of the ’70s girl band the Runaways. (David Moir/Apparition)

The great, cheering irony of the Runaways is that they epitomized rock ’n’ roll without making very good records. Five teenage girls from broken and semi-broken California homes, they stuck a flag in the twitching corpse of mid-’70s hard rock and said: Women can do this, too. That they were pure, manipulated product does not detract from their historical importance or their musical effrontery. In rock, it’s about the attitude as much as the music. In some cases, more so.

And the Runaways were all attitude: Joan Jett cranking out troglodyte riffs on her rhythm guitar while Lita Ford outdid the boys for pop-metal wankery on lead; drummer Sandy West keeping a primitive tom-tom pulse while Jackie Fox held down bass; singer Cherie Currie out front like a cheerleader gone psycho, acting out beautiful, dumb “hits’’ like “Cherry Bomb.’’ From the Runaways flow the distaff rock bands that followed: Bangles and Go-Go’s and Breeders and Sleater-Kinney and Donnas, all the way to the tomboys playing in the garage down at the end of your block.

The first half of “The Runaways’’ keeps that promise in most of its pimply, headlong glory. Adapted from Currie’s memoir, “Neon Angel,’’ by the photographer/music-video director Floria Sigismondi, the film refuses to romanticize even when it’s bending the truth. (Fox chose not to participate, so a fictional bassist named Robin, played by Alia Shawkat, has been invented.) Jett, Currie, and the others are teen outcasts in Me Generation Los Angeles, aching to break out of their lives. You can feel their frustration, their need to make an unholy racket.

The movie pops to life when Jett (Kristen Stewart) introduces herself to music business Svengali Kim Fowley outside a club one night. Played in a deranged star-making performance by Michael Shannon, Fowley is a mercurial glam brute who immediately sees the potential for outrage in an underage girl band. He bullies the Runaways into being.

In this telling, West (Stella Maeve) is the placid emotional anchor and Ford (Scout Taylor-Compton) is mostly an afterthought, despite her notable heavy-metal solo career. The drama kicks in when Fowley recruits nightclubbing lost girl Currie (Dakota Fanning) as the group’s frontwoman. “I like your style,’’ he says. “Want to be in a band?’’

The best scenes in “The Runaways’’ involve long, antagonistic practice sessions in a cramped trailer, Fowley berating the girls with creative invective while joining Jett to compose “Cherry Bomb’’ after Currie shows up to audition with a Peggy Lee song. Later he instructs them on the finer points of dodging flying beer bottles; Jett discovers to her delight that she can volley them back into the audience with her guitar. The concert sequences sound great, in no large part because Jett (who coproduced) has newly re-recorded the songs for maximum sonic boom.

Currie’s fractured home life is also sketched in with paint-peeling details: a self-dramatizing actress mom (Tatum O’Neal, unrecognizable and excellent), a drunk dad (Brett Cullen), a twin sister (Riley Keough, daughter of Lisa Marie Presley and thus a certified Elvis DNA carrier) who’s quietly crushed that fame doesn’t come in twos. After a while, the Runaways make it big — sort of — and the movie shifts into a much more conventional story of too-much-too-soon, with Fowley trying to turn Currie into the star, and the singer retreating into drug abuse and bad behavior. A sad story and an old one, and “The Runaways’’ does little to make it compelling all over again.
Maybe that’s why Fanning seems tentative for the first time in her illustrious little career. Eerily inventive when she plays fictional characters, the actress may be hampered by the film’s generic rise-and-fall rock journey. Then, too, this Cherie Currie is a waif seeking a persona, and Fanning can’t seem to give the drift any bite or meaning.

Ironically, while Fanning’s almost certainly the better actress, Stewart gives the better performance in “The Runaways.’’ I wouldn’t have thought it possible; Stewart has never shown the edge or aggression of a rocker like Jett, and her sullenness seems insubstantial — reactive rather than pro-active. Yet she hunches in on her guitar like a boxer entering a protective crouch, and her voice has a husky, cut-the-crap directness. She owns the movie with a swagger all the more believable for not being overplayed.

With a few exceptions, that’s the real Jett’s singing voice we hear, but Stewart’s imposture convinces. And when “The Runaways’’ gets to the scene where Jett finally moves in on Currie with a lascivious sneer — a kink in the boredom of the road — it’s like a “Twilight’’ of the rock ’n’ roll demi-gods. For all the lip-service “The Runaways’’ pays to the lead singer, its heart is with Team Joan.


Friday, April 9, 2010

'The Twilight Saga: Eclipse' Poster - HQ and Untagged


New Still Of Kristen Stewart From 'The Runaways' To Celebrate KStew's 20th Birthday!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

BAD. ASS. T-3 hours until I see The Runaways tonight with @StephMBe! SQUEE!!!

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