Saturday, November 11, 2006


Movie projects in development, in production, in post-production or in limbo. Maybe someday we'll get to see them.

Updated May 28 2007

Anne Rice, the vampire lady? Sting's evocative "Moon Over Bourbon Street" was inspired by her "Interview With The Vampire", so I checked out the novel. The opening chapters struck me as fine literary writing, before the book devolved into something more generic and commercial. Word is she's become a Christian, and all of a sudden everybody seems to be reading her fictionalized recreation of Jesus' childhood years, and declaring it worthy.
Anyhow, there's a film deal now.
(More here)

Yet another Jesus movie - Mel, what hast thou wrought? Definitely the strangest of the new batch, from Lukas Moodysson. (More here) Updated Nov 21

Bad boy Abel Ferrara's entry in the Jesus Movie Derby that Uncle Mel revved up. Seen on screens big and small in Europe, but nothing outside the festivals here in North America. Check out the whole saga here.

Scott Derrickson is developing an adaptation of John Milton's Paradise Lost. PTC: "Joining the conceptual team is none other than artist Wayne Barlowe, whose book BARLOWE'S INFERNO has given readers a nightmarish and fascinating look at hell . . . . The painter/illustrator has also lent designs on a number of Hollywood projects, notably Guillermo del Toro's BLADE II and HELLBOY. "One of the first things I did was to go after Stuart and Wayne; I liked Stuart's writing skills and Wayne's visual skills," the director says. "INFERNO was the reason I was so passionate about trying to get Wayne involved, and I knew that if PARADISE LOST was going to work, it'd have to have that kind of visual imagination."

Film Comment, May-June 2006: "Donna Woolfolk Cross's historical novel, Pope Joan, has been translated into 23 languages and, in Germany, is number one on the long-term bestseller list. The book tells the tale of a ninth-century Englishwoman who posed as a man to become a monk, and the subsequent road she traveled that eventually led to her securing the title of His Holiness. (The truth of the story remains subject to controversy.) Some may recall the 1972 version of the story starring Liv Ullmann - and now Volker Schlondorff has a film adaptation in development." Years back I read a stage treatment of the story, briefly considered it for Pacific Theatre.
Schlondorff's THE NINTH DAY, about a WW2 priest pressured to stop opposing the Nazis, is now available on DVD.

I'm pretty qualmy about Tim LaHaye's books ("Left Behind," "Right Behind," etc), so my enthusiasm for Upcoming Jesus Movie Project #387 is a tad muted. But I figure you all deserve to be in the know...

PTC reports that The Hollywood Reporter says Jon Voight and Lolita Davidovich are currently shooting a film called September Dawn in Alberta: "a love story set against the 19th century massacre of a wagon train of settlers in Utah at the hands of a renegade Mormon group. Voight plays the leader of the renegade Mormon faction, while Davidovich is a member of the wagon train who stands up to Voight's threats."

Summer 2006: Currently filming on location in Rwanda, a Canadian feature-film treatment of the story of Romeo Dallaire, the French Canadian head of the UN mission at the time of the genocide. After the original documentary by the same title, then HOTEL RWANDA, then SHOOTING DOGS, you start to wonder if there aren't other atrocities film-makers might turn their attention to. Still, Rwanda deserves all the attention it can get. And certainly Dallaire is a compelling figure. A Catholic, he was asked whether he still believes in God after his shattering experiences, and he replied that he did - after all, he'd shaken hands with the devil. Globe & Mail, Aug 5: "Dupuis, having prepared for his latest role with instruction from Dallaire, says he's playing the retired general more like a priest at the start of a spiritual odyssey. . . ."

"Scorsese is turning his sights to a story of missionaries in 17th century Japan. "Silence" is a long-cherished project that he hopes to shoot partially in Japan in summer 2008. Although it's a period piece, Scorsese thinks it has lessons for America today. "It raises a lot of questions about foreign cultures coming in and imposing their way of thinking on another culture they know nothing about," Scorsese told The Associated Press on Thursday -- raising his eyebrows just to make the point absolutely clear." Associated Press, May 24 2007

Jason Goode writes: " Ron, While you are building your book with reviews of soul food movies, I thought I'd recommend one that you probably haven't seen: SOLITUDE by Robin Schlaht ( Robin is a
Regina based filmmaker who I got to know while living in Sask and we've been in touch ever since. Solitude is beautiful film about 3 lives that intersect at a Saskatchewan monastery. The film had a great festival life, but it was never released on DVD (perhaps in the future)."

untitled Dardenne Jesus film
Doug Cummings: "in his newly published diary, Luc Dardenne mentions a couple of times that he and Jean-Pierre are thinking about making a Jesus film. I don't have it with me at the moment, but he writes something like, 'this would not be the story of his life, but a snapshot of his reality; the faces, places, bodies, and interactions of his world' or somethign like that. He insisted they'd shoot it in Israel."

untitled "Inherit The Wind" project
Film Comment, May-June 2006: "The 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial, in which substitute science teacher John T. Scopes was basically charged with heresy for teaching evolution to Tennessee high-school students, has been resurrected. Paramount has hired the prolific scribe Ronald Harwood (who won an Oscar not too long ago for his screenplay for THE PIANIST) to create a contemporary Scopes script based on the proceedings of the 2004 Dover Area School District case in Pennsylvania. Siding with blue-state ethos, the presiding U.S. district court judge barred the teaching of 'intelligent design' in the classroom, and accused the thinly veiled creationists of 'breath-taking inanity.'"

untitled Von Trier Dreyer project
Film Comment, May-June 2006: "Lars von Trier is making a documentary about one of his favorite films (no, not THE SOUND OF MUSIC): Danish master Carl Th. Dreyer's 1964 swan song, GERTRUD."

Peter Chattaway: "Paramount Pictures is headed to Sunday school with the purchase of the A.J. Jacobs novel The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Obey the Bible as Literally as Possible. The studio has taken the book to Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment, which will serve as the producer of the adaptation. Living Biblically will be published by Simon & Schuster in fall 2006. In the book, Jacobs, an editor-at-large at Esquire magazine, spent a year of his life trying to live, literally, by the rules set forth in both the Old and New Testaments."

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