A Nightmare on Elm Street

FacebookTwitterGoogle+PinterestTumblrLinkedInShare

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Taglines: All you have to do is dream…

Nancy, Kris, Quentin, Jesse and Dean all live on Elm Street. At night, they’re all having the same dream-of the same man, wearing a tattered red and green striped sweater, a beaten fedora half-concealing a disfigured face and a gardener’s glove with knives for fingers. And they’re all hearing the same frightening voice…

One by one, he terrorizes them within the curved walls of their dreams, where the rules are his, and the only way out is to wake up. But when one of their number dies a violent death, they soon realize that what happens in their dreams happens for real, and the only way to stay alive is to stay awake. Turning to each other, the four surviving friends try to uncover how they became part of this dark fairytale, hunted by this dark man. Functioning on little to no sleep, they struggle to understand why them, why now, and what their parents aren’t telling them.

Buried in their past is a debt that has just come due, and to save themselves, they will have to plunge themselves into the mind of the most twisted nightmare of all… Freddy Krueger.

New Line Cinema presents a Platinum Dunes Production, “A Nightmare on Elm Street, a contemporary re-imagining of the seminal horror classic, starring Academy Award nominee Jackie Earle Haley (“Little Children, “Watchmen) as Freddy Krueger.

Read the Full Production Notes

A Nightmare on Elm Street Movie Poster

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Directed by: Samuel Bayer
Starring: Jackie Earle Haley, Rooney Mara, Kyle Gallner, Thomas Dekker, Kellan Lutz, Katie Cassidy, Connie Britton
Screenplay by: Wesley Strick
Production Design by: Patrick Lumb
Cinematography by: Jeff Cutter
Film Editing by: Glen Scantlebury
Costume Design by: Mari-An Ceo
Set Decoration by: Karen Frick
Music by: Steve Jablonsky
MPAA Rating: R for disturbing images, language, strong bloody horror violence, terror.
Studio: New Line Cinema
Release Date: April 30, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , ,

A Nightmare on Elm Street Full Production Notes

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Welcome to Your New Nightmare

One, two, Freddy’s coming for you…

“A Nightmare on Elm Street is a reinvention of the seminal 1984 horror classic that unleashed Freddy Krueger upon the nightmares of a generation of fans. Now, a new Freddy Krueger, embodied by Oscar nominee Jackie Earle Haley, is born. Welcome to your new nightmare.

“Freddy Krueger is the mythical boogeyman, says Haley, who breathes new life into Freddy Krueger in “A Nightmare on Elm Street. “He’s everyone’s worst nightmare… the character in the campfire story.

“Real horror, when you think about it, relates to things on a very human level, notes Samuel Bayer, the acclaimed commercial and music video director who makes his feature film debut with “A Nightmare on Elm Street. “And we all dream; it’s universal.

“To me, the most terrifying aspect of Freddy Krueger is that he comes to kill you in your sleep, when you’re at your most defenseless, says producer Michael Bay. “In your dreams, there’s nowhere to hide. You can’t escape, and he won’t stop until you either die or wake up. He provokes fears we all have.

Producer Brad Fuller attests, “In watching horror movies, you often wonder how people can put themselves in such dangerous situation, but the thing with ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ is that no one can stay awake forever.

A Nightmare on Elm Street

“Freddy’s got nothing but time, adds producer Andrew Form. “All he has to do is wait, and eventually you’ll end up in his world.
Wes Craven wrote the original “A Nightmare on Elm Street after he became inspired by a series of newspaper articles about children who had suffered through a war and died from the power of their recurring nightmares. Released in 1984, the initial low-budget film, which starred Robert Englund as Freddy, became an international sensation for New Line Cinema-affectionately called “The House That Freddy Built-and spawned a number of sequels.

Now, more than two decades later, Bay, Form and Fuller, whose Platinum Dunes production company has created a niche for reimagining classic horror properties, felt the time was right to unleash Freddy on a new generation of fans. “Growing up, I always felt that if I died in my dreams I would actually die, and that didn’t come from hearing it on the news; that came from seeing the ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ movies, Form says. “They scared the hell out of me as a child.

Director Samuel Bayer has proven his ability to blur the lines between the real and the unreal and in him the producers saw the ideal sensibility for creating the ultimate nightmare. Form asserts, “Sam has created some of the most enduring images in his video and commercial work, and we were excited to pair him with this story.

Screenwriters Wesley Strick and Eric Heisserer used Craven’s 1984 film as a blueprint but evolved the ideas further as they explored the psychologically resonant elements of the character of Freddy Krueger. “Trying to write Freddy in a fresh way led me back to the Pied Piper, who’d punished a town by taking away its children, says Strick. “When I learned the term ‘pied’ meant ‘stripes of contrasting colors,’ just like Freddy’s famous sweater, it felt like a sign that I was on the right track-making Krueger even scarier by painting him as a righteous avenger, a dimensional villain who’s complex and more human and who may have been falsely accused.

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Freddy’s home turf-where he is in total control-is the world of sleep and dreams. Bayer offers, “Through the centuries, people have tried to figure out their own psyches and why they dream, and why some people fear sleep. At some time in life, we’ve all tried to stay awake for something. We know what it feels like when you get tired and your eyes just can’t stay open. Usually it just means you fall asleep, but in this movie, you could actually die.

Heisserer found that research into this phenomenon uncovered an inescapable fact about sleep: after enough days without it, the brain shuts down to automatically recharge. Even as the teens of Elm Street resort to questionable methods in order to stay awake-from chugging energy drinks to downing prescription psychostimulants-without their knowledge they slip into a micro-sleep state.
“Micro-sleep causes you to fall asleep even for a few moments at a time, Heisserer explains. “Even though you’re still conscious and awake, part of your brain is asleep. So, that phenomenon allows Freddy to get at the characters in the story even when they’re awake…no matter where they are.

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Katie Cassidy as Kris in A Nightmare on Elm Street.

A New Freddy Krueger Is Born

Three, four, better lock the door…

With a charred, disfigured face, an unforgettable voice, and a wicked sense of humor, Freddy Krueger is both a physical and psychological predator as he invades the dreams of suburban teenagers and kills them in their sleep. The sense of palpable danger and genuine horror rests in the embodiment of the monster at the film’s core: Freddy Krueger, played by Jackie Earle Haley.

Haley recalls that fans of the original “Nightmare filled the internet with speculation about him portraying Freddy after the project was announced. “My immediate reaction was, ‘That’s kind of cool!’ And then when the producers called and actually offered me the role, I was pretty flabbergasted. It’s such an amazing, iconic character. It was just an absolute honor to be offered the role of Freddy.

“Jackie embodied everything that we wanted for this role, states Fuller. “The fans were aware of him, and he’s a brilliant actor. We knew we wanted to make a seriously scary movie, and it would be impossible to tell this story without an actor of Jackie’s caliber. We’re not trying to replicate what was done in the past. Jackie made Freddy Krueger his own.

Haley plunged into the mythical aspects of the character to internalize what it was about him that resonated so universally. “Getting to play Freddy was exciting and challenging because, as this mythical boogeyman that we all love to be frightened by, there’s a lot that makes him tick, the actor says. “It’s fascinating that what’s scary on screen has triggers in outside life, and Freddy encompasses so much of what terrifies us.

Haley also credits his predecessor, Robert Englund, for giving the role such power and wicked humor. “It was a very cool process for me, trying to figure out how to make Freddy my own, Haley reveals. “Robert did an amazing job portraying Freddy over the years. He made him who he is. What we’re doing with Freddy with this new approach is still trying to be true to those things that fill him with rage, and the specifics that make him the malevolent villain that he is. But I think we’re trying to capture him in a new that’s darker, and a little bit more serious, less jokey and, hopefully, more scary.

Bayer has nothing but praise for Haley’s work. “This is definitely Jackie’s take. He created a character that you’re going to hate and be scared of, but, at the same time, you’re going to have empathy for him-it’s all what Jackie brought to it.

At the suggestion of the filmmakers, Haley researched serial killers in preparation for the role, but ultimately chose to take Freddy out of the realm of fact and into the realm of myth. “I realized I wasn’t playing a serial killer, he affirms. “I wanted to be true to who Freddy Krueger is and yet still bring a little bit of realism to his back story and what it was that turned him into this.

A New Elm Street

Nine, ten, never sleep again…

Working with production designer Patrick Lumb, Bayer sought to use the locations to create a familiar suburban world so safe that Freddy’s intrusion is all the more jarring. By contrast, Freddy’s world was in part inspired by the dark, fantastical paintings of late 18th/early 19th-century Spanish artist Francisco Goya. “What we tried to do was to base the dream world on the real world, and craft rich and exciting transitions between them, Lumb states. “Working on dreamscapes and inventing a world around Freddy was one of the great joys of this project for me.

The filmmakers found their classic Midwestern town in Chicago, Illinois, and surrounding suburbs, as well as neighboring Gary, Indiana. With all the principal characters being students at Springwood High School, the production utilized two local high schools: John Hersey High School in Arlington Heights, a northwest suburb of Chicago, for interiors; and Elk Grove High School in nearby Elk Grove Village, for exteriors and establishing shots.

The filmmakers shot during school hours, and enlisted hundreds of students and teachers to become background extras for the various sequences shot at the high schools. In addition to exteriors, Elk Grove also offered a cavernous indoor swimming pool, where Quentin is a swim team member of the Springwood Mustangs, with his fellow swim team members being played by Elk Grove’s water polo and swim teams.

The second week of filming took place entirely in the historic neighborhood of Jewel Park, a circa 1920s upper middle class suburb in the village of Barrington, Illinois. Linden Road, a winding street lined with large two-story homes, portrays the film’s iconic Elm Street, where Nancy and Kris’s homes are located across the street from each other. In homage to the original “A Nightmare on Elm Street, Nancy’s home was numbered 1428 Elm Street, the same address Nancy had in the original.

One of the most cinematic and creepy locations was the historic City Methodist Church in Gary, Indiana, an abandoned nine-story tall English gothic church, which now sits in picturesque ruins. This became the setting for one of Quentin’s encounters with Freddy Krueger.

Freddy’s most personal space is the steamy, fiery boiler room, a specter of the “A Nightmare on Elm Street mythology. These sequences were filmed over four nights at a power station in South Chicago. The multi-level industrial facility was outfitted by the film’s art and special effects departments to feature vintage boiler room equipment as well as steaming pipes, smoke, fire, dripping water, and big chains where Freddy could hang his victims.

The production also utilized the historic former ACME Steel plant (now the Beemsterboer Steel Plant) and nearby training center in Chicago, which the art department transformed into the Badham preschool, where Fred Krueger worked as a caretaker 15 years earlier. “The steel plant was very industrial and down and out, but it was perfect for us, Lumb remarks. “We did an extensive amount of work on the exterior and the interior. The classrooms were all fabricated from the doors, to the color on the walls, to the flooring, and everything else. One of the nice things about the preschool set is you feel a little bit enclosed. It’s kind of ominous in a way because it’s similar to a jail cell, but at the same time you can ‘friendly it up’ to give the illusion of safety, even though it’s anything but safe.

Other notable Chicago area locations included Bluff City Cemetery, a late 19th century gothic cemetery in Elgin; Powell’s Bookstores in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood; Michael Reece Hospital in Chicago; Hawthorne Pharmacy in Cicerop; and the ultra-modern Orland Park Police Station in Orland Park, the first LEED (Leadership in Environmental Design) Gold Certified Police Station in the U.S.

Many of the film’s interiors, along with some green-screen sets, were erected on two soundstages at Chicago Studio City, an independent studio and production services facility. Over the course of three weeks of filming on stage, some of the prominent sets included the charred and water-filled classroom sets from Kris’s nightmare; Kris’s bedroom sets; Nancy’s art-filled bedroom where Freddy stretches out from the wallpaper above her bed, and the bathroom where his bladed hand emerges from under the water.

The burnt classroom and water-filled classroom sets were among Lumb’s favorite, and most challenging, sets to design. For the water-logged classroom, Lumb referenced a book of photographs from the New Orleans flood from Hurricane Katrina to give these nightmarish images a solid basis in what could be.

Producer Bay credits Bayer for creating a film that seamlessly juxtaposes the physical world and the dream world that is Freddy’s domain. “In many ways, they’re dark mirror images of each other, he asserts. “Both are very real, very visceral, but the safety and security of this comfortable and suburban town and high school become the lie, because the dream world is where these kids have to fight for their lives. They have to believe in it completely, and the audience also has to believe in it completely. Sam did an incredible job creating this jarring dichotomy.

Bayer reflects, “It’s an urban fairytale. It’s what scares you. As the kids in the movie fight so hard to stay awake, the switch between the real world and the dream world happens even more quickly, so it’s a ride. But we wanted to create a situation in which this nightmare scenario is grounded in truth, to the point that you wonder, ‘Can someone actually kill you in your sleep?’

A Nightmare on Elm Street Movie Poster

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Directed by: Samuel Bayer
Starring: Jackie Earle Haley, Rooney Mara, Kyle Gallner, Thomas Dekker, Kellan Lutz, Katie Cassidy, Connie Britton
Screenplay by: Wesley Strick
Production Design by: Patrick Lumb
Cinematography by: Jeff Cutter
Film Editing by: Glen Scantlebury
Costume Design by: Mari-An Ceo
Set Decoration by: Karen Frick
Music by: Steve Jablonsky
MPAA Rating: R for disturbing images, language, strong bloody horror violence, terror.
Studio: New Line Cinema
Release Date: April 30, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , ,

The A-Team Movie Full Production Notes

The A-Team Movie

“The A-Team” was one of the most popular and successful television series to come out of the ‘80s. Created by Stephen J. Cannell and Frank Lupo, the series focused on the exploits of a team of four Vietnam veterans who, sentenced by a military court for a crime they didn’t commit, head underground and become soldiers of fortune. Led by a cigar-chomping Col. John “Hannibal” Smith, played by George Peppard, the team acted on the side of good, while trying to clear their names. The series garnered a large and enthusiastic following.

“‘The A-Team’ series went well beyond being a hit television series. It was a phenomenon,” says series creator Stephen J. Cannell, who is one of the film’s producers. “There were never leading men like those on ‘The A-Team’ on television before. At its core, the series had a simple premise: four guys who are wrongly convicted of a crime decide to go out and help people who can’t help themselves. The need to fight back against injustice is a great subject for a story and audiences responded to the show with fervor. Generations of kids grew up on the series and then a new generation got a chance to see it in reruns and got the same kick out of it.”

Acclaimed filmmaker Joe Carnahan (Narc, Smokin’ Aces), one of the millions who grew up with the show, knew it had a devoted following and recognized the challenges in bringing THE A-TEAM to the big screen. “This was a coveted property and re-imagining a show I remembered as a kid was tough to turn down,” says Carnahan. “We wanted to be respectful of the series for the generation of fans who grew up with it but we also wanted to take THE A-TEAM into the twenty-first century.”

Although studio executives and industry watchers agreed the series’ premise provided great foundation for a major motion picture, the film project gestated for almost a decade with the script going through a number of iterations as writers struggled to avoid the show’s campy nature.

“We’d been trying to get the script right for a long time,” recalls producer and former Twentieth Century Fox senior production executive Alex Young. “If you want a modern movie you have to make it feel bigger and more muscular and make the action sequences compete with the best of today’s blockbusters. Joe Carnahan has a very modern and muscular sensibility and his approach to the material was grittier and more real-world [than the series’].”

The A-Team Movie

When Carnahan came on board, he and writing partner Brian Bloom redrafted the action to take place during the impending troop withdrawal from the Middle East. They drew on the camaraderie and humor at the heart of the series, but ramped up the action, drama, adventure and intensity. Says Carnahan: “The goal with THE A-TEAM was to make a compelling, inventive action movie, but to keep it as emotional, real and accessible as possible. There’s no point in doing this kind of action and adventure if you’re not going to elevate it.”

Carnahan and Bloom felt the material needed to reflect contemporary times and appeal to modern audiences. “The intention was not to abandon the television show and the characters that everyone loved so much, but to evolve and contemporize the story,” says Bloom.

“People are a lot savvier than they were 25 years ago when the show debuted,” adds Carnahan. “If you tried to put the series out today you wouldn’t get away with what they got away with then. At the time, the campy aspect of the show was hugely entertaining but today’s audiences are a lot more sophisticated, so to bring it into this time and this place, the tone and approach had to change to reflect contemporary sensibilities.”

While opting to contemporize the material and elevate the drama, the filmmakers agreed that if the A-Team’s transition to the big-screen was to be successful, the camaraderie that was at the heart and soul of the series would also have to be a key component of the film. Comments Carnahan: “What I always loved about the show wasn’t so much the situational stuff but the camaraderie and the affection these guys had for one another. It wasn’t the wild stories or plot twists that made the show a success, it was the fact that you believed that these four guys genuinely liked one another and really had each other’s backs.”

“What you came to learn was that these guys desperately needed each other to continue, not only emotionally, but technically and tactically,” emphasizes Bloom. “They were definitely a team.”

The A-Team Movie - Jessiica Biel

“People really loved these characters,” says producer Jules Daly. “Sure they were charismatic and funny, but there was also a great sense of affection and connection between the four guys, which the audiences really responded to. We all knew the most critical thing in terms of the film working would be the chemistry between the four leads.”

As the project gained momentum and the script was fine-tuned, the filmmakers turned their attention to casting the “Team.” “There was a lot of debate about where to go with the casting,” recalls Alex Young. “And it was tricky, because when we were getting into it we realized there were a lot of different ways to go; you could look at every male actor over a certain age and make a legitimate case for them being in the film. The one thing we knew was that we wanted the four [actors playing the A-Team] to feel fresh. We didn’t want to just cast the usual suspects and then surround them with a bunch of supporting actors.”

When contemplating casting choices for the pivotal role of Col. John “Hannibal” Smith, the filmmakers felt it was important to find an actor who exuded power, confidence and authority – along with a razor-sharp sense of humor. As The A-Team’s leader, Hannibal is a master tactician who is always a step ahead of the enemy. He keeps his team out of trouble, but his unconventional methods rarely lead to a predictable conclusion. No matter the scheme, he loves it when a plan comes together.

Oscar-nominated actor Liam Neeson is best known for his dramatic turns portraying characters with great physical presence and humanity, but it was his acclaimed action-hero performance in the global hit Taken that led the filmmakers to see Hannibal was a natural fit for the actor. Says Jules Daly: “Liam is sexy, fit, and strong and brings gravitas to the role. I think when Liam came on board, he set the tone as to where the project was going.”

“No matter what the role, Liam shows different facets of himself and the characters he plays, and he does it with integrity, passion and honesty,” says Carnahan. “Liam brings the right combination of intelligence and strength to the character. It’s easy to believe that his men love, trust and respect him.”

The A-Team Movie

In describing what attracted him to the role of Hannibal Smith, Neeson states: “I was really taken with the relationship between the four guys that [co-screenwriters] Joe [Carnahan] and Brian [Bloom] managed to keep at the heart of the script. Clearly a lot of thought had gone into the story and characters, and the script had a wonderful camaraderie between the guys. Hannibal is a believable hero. He’s moral, has a strong sense of ethics and loves his country and his men.”

While Neeson was pleased the opportunity to play the master tactician, he struggled with the fact that he would also have to embrace his character’s trademark stogie. “As an ex-smoker, I felt conflicted about the cigar,” admits the actor. “But I understood why the writers kept the conceit; it does add a contentment to Hannibal’s character when a plan is going well and he pulls out a cigar and lights it. There’s a feeling of oneness with the world when he lights that match that I totally empathize with, and I understand there were certain scenes where we had to have the stogies, but obviously we don’t want kids to emulate this.”

Lt. Templeton “Face” Peck is the A-Team’s con man and go-to guy when it comes to getting what they need when they need it. He uses his good looks and charm to scam and hustle his way to the prize and to live the good life. Face can talk anyone – especially women – out of (or into) anything he wants. To bring the role of Face to the screen, the filmmakers tapped Bradley Cooper, whose starring role in the comedy smash The Hangover cemented his reputation as one of the hottest talents of his generation. “When Bradley expressed an interest in playing Face, I didn’t see the point in looking any further,” recalls Carnahan. “You know when you hit it off with someone right away and you think, okay, this is probably going to be one of my lifelong friends. That was the vibe I got with Cooper immediately. A lot of actors talk a big game, but they don’t deliver. Bradley gives it his all 100 percent of the time. He’s a great guy with a great sense of humor and I think he brings a new dimension to the role.”

“Aside from being enormously clever, seductive and handsome, the character of Face needed to be really likable and charming; qualities Bradley has in spades,” asserts Daly. “He’s a tremendously appealing guy and looks the part physically, so you can believe him when he gets into action. It was just a really terrific fit.”

It wasn’t a difficult decision for Cooper to tackle the role. “It’s always been a dream to do a big action movie,” recalls the actor. “I love sports and I love pretending to fight. And to take on such an iconic show, one that I grew up on, and to do so besides the likes of Liam Neeson, is just amazing.” Cooper particularly enjoyed that the role gave him the opportunity to be a part of some physically demanding action scenes. To make sure he was up to the task, Cooper adopted a strict diet and rigorous training regimen – which included doing ‘The Grouse Grind” a grueling speed-hike up 2,800 feet of Vancouver’s Grouse Mountain.

“I keep pretty fit, but I had to up the ante for this film,” says Cooper. “Action scenes are tricky and take an enormous amount of energy. You have to pay close attention to so many things – your body position, how you move when you fight, and how you move when you handle a gun. Face is a soldier; he doesn’t mind getting a little rough so I had to be ready for the physical stuff.”

The A-Team Movie Poster

The A-Team

Directed by: Joe Carnahan
Starring by: Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Sharlto Copley, Jessica Biel, Quinton Jackson, Yul Vazquez
Screenplay by: Michael Brandt, Derek Haas
Production Design by: Charles Wood
Cinematography by: Mauro Fiore
Film Editing by: Roger Barton, Jim May
Costume Design by: Betsy Heimann
Set Decoration by: Elizabeth Wilcox
Music by: Alan Silvestri
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for Intense sequences of action and violence throughout, language and smoking.
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: June 11, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , ,

The A-Team

The A-Team Movie

Taglines: There is no Plan B.

John “Hannibal” Smith (Liam Neeson) is held captive in Mexico by two Federal Police officers working for renegade General Javier Tuco (Yul Vazquez). Hannibal escapes and sets out to rescue Templeton “Faceman” Peck (Bradley Cooper), who is held captive at Tuco’s ranch.

Hannibal saves Face after enlisting fellow Ranger BA Baracus (Quinton Jackson), driving to the rescue in BA’s modified GMC Vandura van. Pursued by Tuco, they stop at a nearby Army Hospital to recruit the services of eccentric pilot Howling Mad Murdock (Sharlto Copley). They flee in a medical helicopter, chased by Tuco, in a dogfight that leaves BA with a fear of flying. The battle ends when they lure Tuco’s helicopter into American airspace, where it is shot down by a US air force plane for trespassing.

The A-Team is an American action-comedy film based on the television series of the same name created by Frank Lupo and Stephen J. Cannell. Co-written and directed by Joe Carnahan, the film stars Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Quinton Jackson, Sharlto Copley, Jessica Biel, Patrick Wilson, and Brian Bloom. The film tells the story “The A-Team”, a Special Forces team imprisoned for a crime they did not commit, who escape and set out to clear their names. The film was produced by Stephen J. Cannell, Ridley Scott, and Tony Scott.

The film had been in development since the mid-1990s, having gone through a number of writers and story ideas, and being put on hold a number of times. Upon its release, the film received mixed reviews from critics and performed slightly below expectations at the box office, but was still a success.

Read the Full Production Notes

The A-Team Movie Poster

The A-Team

Directed by: Joe Carnahan
Starring by: Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Sharlto Copley, Jessica Biel, Quinton Jackson, Yul Vazquez
Screenplay by: Michael Brandt, Derek Haas
Production Design by: Charles Wood
Cinematography by: Mauro Fiore
Film Editing by: Roger Barton, Jim May
Costume Design by: Betsy Heimann
Set Decoration by: Elizabeth Wilcox
Music by: Alan Silvestri
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for Intense sequences of action and violence throughout, language and smoking.
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: June 11, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , ,

Agora Movie Full Production Notes

Agora Movie

Agora (Spanish: Ágora) is a Spanish English-language historical drama film directed by Alejandro Amenábar and written by Amenábar and Mateo Gil. The biopic stars Rachel Weisz as Hypatia, a female mathematician, philosopher and astronomer in late 4th-century Roman Egypt, who investigates the flaws of the geocentric Ptolemaic system and the heliocentric model that challenges it. Surrounded by religious turmoil and social unrest, Hypatia struggles to save the knowledge of classical antiquity from destruction. Max Minghella co-stars as Davus, Hypatia’s father’s slave, and Oscar Isaac as Hypatia’s student, and later prefect of Alexandria, Orestes.

The story uses historical fiction to highlight the relationship between religion and science amidst the decline of Greco-Roman polytheism and the Christianization of the Roman Empire. The title of the film takes its name from the agora, a gathering place in ancient Greece, similar to the Roman forum. The film was produced by Fernando Bovaira and shot on the island of Malta from March to June 2008. Justin Pollard, co-author of The Rise and Fall of Alexandria (2007), was the historical advisor for the film.

Agora Movie - Rachel Weisz

About the Story

In 391 AD, Alexandria is part of the Roman Empire, and Greek philosopher Hypatia (Rachel Weisz) is a teacher at the Platonic school, where future leaders are educated. Hypatia is the daughter of Theon (Michael Lonsdale), the director of the Musaeum of Alexandria. Hypatia, her father’s slave, Davus (Max Minghella), and two of her pupils, Orestes (Oscar Isaac) and Synesius (Rupert Evans), are immersed in the changing political and social landscape. She rejects Orestes’s love (she offers him her bloody menstrual towel, to show him that love has its drawbacks, while studying has none): she prefers to devote herself to science. Davus assists Hypatia in her classes and is interested in science, and is also secretly in love with her.

Meanwhile, social unrest begins challenging the Roman rule of the city as Pagans and Christians come into conflict. When the Christians start defiling the statues of the pagan gods, the pagans, including Orestes and Hypatia’s father, ambush the Christians to squash their rising influence. However, in the ensuing battle, the pagans unexpectedly find themselves outnumbered by a large Christian mob.

Hypatia’s father is gravely injured and Hypatia and the pagans take refuge in the Library of the Serapeum. The Christian siege of the library ends when an envoy of the Roman Emperor declares that the pagans are pardoned, however the Christians shall be allowed to enter the library and do with it what they please. Hypatia and the pagans flee, trying to save the most important scrolls, before the Christians overtake the library and destroy its contents. Davus chooses to join the Christian forces. He later returns with a gladius and starts sexually assaulting her, but quickly begins to sob and offers his sword to her. However, she removes his slave collar and tells him he is free.

Agora Movie

Several years later, Orestes, now converted to Christianity, is prefect of Alexandria. Hypatia continues to investigate the motions of the Sun, the Moon, the five known “wanderers” (planets) and the stars. Some Christians ridicule the thinking that the Earth is a sphere, by arguing that people far from the top would fall off the Earth. When they ask Davus his opinion he avoids conflict by saying that only God knows these things.

Hypatia also investigates the heliocentric model of the solar system proposed by Aristarchus of Samos; by having an object dropped from the mast of a moving ship she demonstrates to Orestes that a possible motion of the Earth would not affect the motion, relative to Earth, of a falling object on Earth. However, due to religious objections against heliocentrism, the Christians have now forbidden Hypatia to teach at the school. The Christians and the Jews come into conflict, committing violent acts against each other.

The leader of the Christians, Cyril (Sami Samir), views Hypatia as having too much influence over Orestes and stages a public ceremony intended to force Orestes to subjugate her. Hypatia’s former pupil, Synesius, now the Bishop of Cyrene, comes to her rescue as a religious authority counterweight, but says he cannot help her unless she accepts Christianity; she refuses. Hypatia makes a personal discovery, theorizing that the Earth orbits around the Sun in an elliptic, not circular, orbit with the Sun at one of the foci. Cyril convinces a mob of Christians that Hypatia is a witch and they vow to kill her.

Davus tries to run ahead to warn Hypatia, but she is captured by the mob. They strip Hypatia naked and are about to skin her alive until Davus persuades the mob otherwise, and they decide to stone her instead. When everyone goes outside to collect stones, Davus secretly suffocates her to spare her the pain of being stoned to death and tells the mob that she fainted. Davus leaves as they begin to stone her.

Agora Movie Poster

Agora

Directed by: Alejandro Amenábar
Starring by: Rachel Weisz, Max Minghella, Oscar Isaac, Ashraf Barhom, Michael Londsdale, Amber Rose Revah, Rupert Evans
Screenplay by: Alejandro Amenábar
Production Design by: Guy Hendrix Dyas
Cinematography by: Xavi Giménez
Film Editing by: Nacho Ruiz Capillas
Costume Design by: Gabriella Pescucci
Set Decoration by: Larry Dias
Music by: Dario Marianelli
MPAA Rating: R for some violence.
Studio: Newmarket Films
Release Date: May 28, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , ,

Agora

Agora Movie

Taglines: Alexandria, Egypt. 391 A.D. The world changed forever.

4th century A.D. Egypt under the Roman Empire… Violent religious upheaval in the streets of Alexandria spills over into the city’s famous Library. Trapped inside its walls, the brilliant stronomer Hypatia and her disciples fight to save the wisdom of the Ancient World… Among them, the two men competing for her heart: the witty, privileged Orestes and Davus, Hypatia’s young slave, who is torn between his secret love for her and the freedom he knows can be his if he chooses to join the unstoppable surge of the Christians.

Set in ancient Egypt under Roman rule, “Agora” follows the brilliant and beautiful astronomer Hypatia (Weisz) who leads a group of disciples fighting to save the wisdom of the Ancient World, as violent religious upheaval spills into the streets of Alexandria. Among these disciples are two men competing for her heart: the witty, privileged Orestes (Isaac) and Davus (Minghella), Hypatia’s young slave, who is torn between his secret love for her and the freedom he knows can be his if he chooses to join the unstoppable surge of the Christians.

Read the Full Production Notes

Agora Movie Poster

Agora

Directed by: Alejandro Amenábar
Starring by: Rachel Weisz, Max Minghella, Oscar Isaac, Ashraf Barhom, Michael Londsdale, Amber Rose Revah, Rupert Evans
Screenplay by: Alejandro Amenábar
Production Design by: Guy Hendrix Dyas
Cinematography by: Xavi Giménez
Film Editing by: Nacho Ruiz Capillas
Costume Design by: Gabriella Pescucci
Set Decoration by: Larry Dias
Music by: Dario Marianelli
MPAA Rating: R for some violence.
Studio: Newmarket Films
Release Date: May 28, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , ,

Alice in Wonderland 3D Full Production Notes

Alice in Wonderland 3D

A young girl when she first visited magical Underland, Alice Kingsleigh (Mia Wasikowska) is now a teenager with no memory of the place — except in her dreams. Her life takes a turn for the unexpected when, at a garden party for her fiance and herself, she spots a certain white rabbit and tumbles down a hole after him. Reunited with her friends the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp), the Cheshire Cat and others, Alice learns it is her destiny to end the Red Queen’s (Helena Bonham Carter) reign of terror.

For Alice Kingsleigh, life is about take a turn for the unexpected. Hamish, the worthy but dull son of Lord and Lady Ascot, proposes to Alice, now 19, during a Victorian garden party thrown in her honor. She flees without giving an answer, heading off after a rabbit she’s spotted running across the lawn; the rabbit, of course, dons a waistcoat and pocket watch.

Following the White Rabbit across a meadow, Alice watches as he disappears into a rabbit hole, suddenly finding herself pulled down after him, tumbling through a strange, dreamlike passage before landing in a round hall with many doors. She discovers a bottle labelled DRINK ME; its contents shrink her, and a cake with the words EAT ME iced on top; it makes her grow.

Alice eventually finds her way through a door into a wondrous and fantastical world called Underland-the same place she visited as a young girl-though as a child, she misunderstood the name and called it Wonderland. There she meets a menagerie of colourful characters, including a swashbuckling Dormouse, an off-his-rocker Mad Hatter, a grinning Cheshire Cat, a caterpillar called Absolem, an eerie White Queen, and her spiteful older sister, the Red Queen, who happens to be the petulant ruler of Underland.

From Walt Disney Pictures and visionary director Tim Burton comes an epic 3D fantasy adventure “Alice in Wonderland, a magical and imaginative twist on some of the most beloved stories of all time. Johnny Depp stars as the Mad Hatter, and Mia Wasikowska as 19-year-old Alice, who returns to the whimsical world she first encountered as a young girl, reuniting with her childhood friends: the White Rabbit, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, the Dormouse, the Caterpillar, the Cheshire Cat, and of course, the Mad Hatter. Alice embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny and end the Red Queen’s reign of terror.

Alice in Wonderland 3D

The all-star cast also includes Anne Hathaway as the White Queen, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen, Crispin Glover as Stayne-Knave of Hearts, and Matt Lucas as Tweedledee and Tweedledum. Providing the voices for Underland’s menagerie of inhabitants is an eclectic and impressive mix of acting talent, including Michael Sheen as the White Rabbit, Stephen Fry as the Cheshire Cat, Alan Rickman as Absolem the caterpillar, Timothy Spall as Bayard, Barbara Windsor as the Dormouse, Sir Christopher Lee as the Jabberwocky, Michael Gough as the Dodo, and Paul Whitehouse as the March Hare.

“Alice in Wonderland marks a return to Disney for director Tim Burton (“The Nightmare Before Christmas, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). The film is produced by Oscar and Thalberg winner Richard D. Zanuck, Joe Roth and Suzanne and Jennifer Todd, and executive produced by Peter Tobyansen and Chris Lebenzon. The screenplay is written by Linda Woolverton.

“Alice in Wonderland” will be presented in Disney Digital 3D(tm), RealD 3D and IMAX(R) 3D. RealD 3D is the new generation of entertainment, with crisp, bright, ultra-realistic images so lifelike you feel like you’ve stepped inside the movie. RealD 3D adds depth that puts you in the thick of the action, whether you’re joining favourite characters in a new world or dodging objects that seem to fly into the theatre. RealD pioneered today’s digital 3D and is the world’s most used 3D cinema technology with over 9,500 screens under contract and 5,000 screens installed in 48 countries. And unlike the old days of paper glasses, RealD 3D glasses look like sunglasses, are designed to comfortably fit on all moviegoers, and easily over prescription glasses.

Along with the film’s nationwide release in conventional theatres, “Alice in Wonderland” will be released in IMAX theatres, digitally re-mastered into the unparalleled image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience through proprietary IMAX DMR technology. With crystal clear images, laser-aligned digital sound and maximized field of view, IMAX provides the world’s most immersive movie experience.

Alice in Wonderland 3D

Capturing the wonder of Lewis Carroll’s beloved “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and “Through the Looking-Glass (1871) with stunning, avant-garde visuals and the most charismatic characters in literary history, “Alice in Wonderland comes to the big screen around the world in Spring 2010.

Who’s Who in “Alice in Wonderland”

ALICE (Mia Wasikowska) is a 19-year-old woman contemplating her future. An independent soul, she feels trapped in the narrow-minded views of women in aristocratic Victorian London. Alice Kingsleigh is uncertain how to balance her dreams with other people’s expectations. Her true destiny lies in Underland, a place she first visited as a child (and called Wonderland)-though she has no memory of it or its inhabitants. So down the rabbit hole she falls, revisiting Underland and reuniting with her childhood friends, including Absolem the caterpillar, the Cheshire Cat, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, and of course, the Mad Hatter. She thinks it’s all a dream as she shrinks and grows, grows and shrinks. But when she encounters some of the not-so-friendly residents of Underland and is asked to defend the fantastical land, she’s not sure if she’s up to the challenge.

THE MAD HATTER (Johnny Depp) doesn’t just wear his heart on his sleeve-his ever-changing moods are quite literally reflected in his face and his attire. He’s been anxiously awaiting Alice’s return and is, arguably, her one true friend, believing in her when nobody else does. He is fearless, going to great lengths to protect her at his own risk. Once the proud hat maker for the White Queen, the Hatter has been affected by mercury poisoning, an unfortunate side effect of the hat-making process, and isn’t altogether well. “I always saw the Hatter as kind of tragic, says Depp. “He’s a victim in a lot of ways. The mercury has certainly taken its toll, but there’s a tragic element to his past in this particular version that weighs pretty heavily on the character.

IRACEBETH, THE RED QUEEN (Helena Bonham Carter), is the tyrannical monarch of Underland, an amalgam of the Queen of Hearts from “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and the Red Queen from “Through the Looking-Glass. With her oversized head, fiery temper and propensity to scream for people’s heads to be chopped off, she rules her subjects through fear. “She’s got emotional problems, says Bonham Carter. “It takes nothing, practically, for her to lose her temper. Her tantrums are that of a two-year-old. Her younger sibling, the White Queen, has designs on the throne and crown that Iracebeth once stole from her.

MIRANA, THE WHITE QUEEN (Anne Hathaway), is the younger sister of the Red Queen, and while she appears to be all sweetness and light, beneath the surface there’s a hint of darkness to her character. “She comes from the same gene pool as the Red Queen, says Hathaway. “She really likes the dark side, but she’s so scared of going too far into it that she’s made everything appear very light and happy. But she’s living in that place out of fear that she won’t be able to control herself. When Alice returns to Underland, the White Queen takes her under her wing, offering her protection, although her motives aren’t completely altruistic.

ILOSOVIC STAYNE, THE KNAVE OF HEARTS (Crispin Glover), is the head of the Red Queen’s Army. Seven feet, six inches tall, with a scarred face and a heart-shaped patch covering his left eye, Stayne is an arrogant, tricky character who follows the Red Queen’s every order. He’s the only one capable of pacifying her and calming her dramatic mood swings. “I am the martial element for the Red Queen, says Glover. “The Red Queen has a fair amount of short-tempered reactions to things that people do, and so my character has to be quite diplomatic. His darker side emerges in the shadows of the castle hallways.

TWEEDLEDEE and TWEEDLEDUM (Matt Lucas) are rotund twin brothers who constantly disagree with each other and whose confusing chatter makes little sense to anyone but them. When Alice arrives in Underland, she looks to the Tweedles for guidance. Innocent and infantile, adorable and sweet, they mean well but are of little real help since they speak in weird rhythms and riddles. “I like to think the Tweedles have never really encountered a proper human before, says Matt Lucas, the British comedian and actor who plays them both. “When Alice arrives, she is an object of curiosity. In this world, Alice is the unusual one and everything else is normal. A talking caterpillar is normal. A girl is unusual.

McTWISP, THE WHITE RABBIT (voice of Michael Sheen), is always worried about being late, always in a hurry, always rushing about. Charged with finding Alice and bringing her back to Underland so that she can fulfill her destiny, he shows up at her garden party in an effort to lure her back down the rabbit hole. “He’s a warm character, says Sheen, “but, at the same time, he can be quite fussy and quite strict with Alice as well. He has an edge to him, a nervous energy, always feeling like he’s behind time, time is very important to him. But he’s quite brave when called upon.

ABSOLEM, THE CATERPILLAR (voice of Alan Rickman), is the all-knowing and absolute guardian of the Oraculum, an ancient document that depicts every major event, past, present and future, in Underland’s history. Alice is taken by the White Rabbit and the Tweedles to meet Absolem, so that he can ascertain whether she is, in fact, the real Alice who first visited Underland as a child, the Alice who is destined to help them. They find the bulbous blue caterpillar atop a mushroom in a mushroom forest surrounded by misty smoke. Several times Absolem challenges Alice to come to a better understanding of herself, forcing her to face the difficult question: “Who are you?

CHESSUR, THE CHESHIRE CAT (voice of Stephen Fry), is a dapper tabby with the ability to appear and disappear. He is all calm, casual sensuality with a seductive grin that masks his cowardice. It’s the cat’s disembodied head that first appears to Alice in Tulgey Wood after she’s been attacked by the vicious Bandersnatch. He offers to purify the gashes on her arm by licking them. Alice declines, although she allows him to lead her to the Hatter’s Tea Party where the Hatter blames him for deserting them on the day the Red Queen seized control of Underland. Using his skills and the Hatter’s coveted top hat, Chessur later finds a way to redeem himself.

MALLYMKUN, THE DORMOUSE (voice of Barbara Windsor), is a swashbuckling mouse in Underland who wears riding breeches. She refuses to believe that the White Rabbit has found the right Alice, the one who can help return Underland to its true splendor, and is only too happy to poke poor Alice in the ankle with a hat pin when Alice insists she’s only dreaming. But the tough little mouse comes through in a pinch when Alice is threatened by a clawing creature called a Bandersnatch. Her loyalty to the Hatter is unmatched, and she willingly faces the prospect of death to stand by him.

THE DODO (voice of Michael Gough) is one of the first residents of Underland Alice sees upon entering the fantastical world. One of the oldest Underland inhabitants, the Dodo wears eye-glasses and carries a walking stick. Both quiet and wise, he stops his friends’ bickering over Alice’s true identity by suggesting they bring her to the even wiser Absolem.

THE JABBERWOCKY (voice of Sir Christopher Lee) is tall as a dinosaur with reptilian wings, scales, long sharp claws, a pronged tail and a vest. This ferocious hissing beast is a favorite weapon of the Red Queen and will stand between Alice and her ultimate destiny.

THE MARCH HARE (voice of Paul Whitehouse) hosts the Mad Hatter’s Tea Parties at his Hare House. Paranoid, anxious and slightly insane, he constantly wrings his paws and ears and has a thing for tossing teapots and other items. He has a penchant for cooking and is one of the few Underland inhabitants to escape the Red Queen’s clutches all together.

BAYARD THE BLOODHOUND (voice of Timothy Spall) is an unwilling accomplice to the Red Queen’s forces, fearful that his imprisoned wife and pups will be injured if he doesn’t do Stayne’s bidding. He proves to be secretively loyal to the Underland Underground resistance, becoming both Alice’s ally and a rather convenient transportation system.

THE BANDERSNATCH is a disgusting, drooling, foul-smelling creature with a big filthy body and the squashed, teeth-baring face of a rabid bulldog. A swipe of his long claws leaves Alice with a rather painful reminder of the Red Queen’s horrible reign.

Alice in Wonderland 3D Movie Poster

Alice in Wonderland 3D

Directed by: Tim Burton
Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Michael Sheen, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Crispin Glover, Christopher Lee, Matt Lucas
Screenplay by: Linda Woolverton
Production Design by: Robert Stromberg
Cinematography by: Dariusz Wolski
Film Editing by: Chris Lebenzon
Music by: Danny Elfman
Costume Design by: Colleen Atwood
Set Decoration by: Karen O’Hara
MPAA Rating: PG for fantasy action / violence involving scary images and situations, and for a smoking caterpillar.
Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
Release Date: March 5, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , , , , ,

Alice in Wonderland 3D

Alice in Wonderland 3D

From Walt Disney Pictures and visionary director Tim Burton comes an epic 3D fantasy adventure “Alice in Wonderland,” a magical and imaginative twist on some of the most beloved stories of all time. Johnny Depp stars as the Mad Hatter and Mia Wasikowska as 19-year-old Alice, who returns to the whimsical world she first encountered as a young girl, reuniting with her childhood friends: the White Rabbit, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, the Dormouse, the Caterpillar, the Cheshire Cat, and of course, the Mad Hatter. Alice embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny and end the Red Queen’s reign of terror.

The all-star cast also includes Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter and Crispin Glover; Linda Woolverton wrote the screenplay. Capturing the wonder of Lewis Carroll’s beloved “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” (1865) and “Through the Looking-Glass” (1871) with stunning, avant-garde visuals and the most charismatic characters in literary history, “Alice in Wonderland” comes to the big screen in Disney Digital 3D on March 5, 2010.

“Alice in Wonderland” marks a return to Disney for director Tim Burton (“The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”). The film is produced by Richard Zanuck and Suzanne and Jennifer Todd, and executive produced by Peter Tobyansen. The screenplay is written by Linda Woolverton. Visual effects supervisor is five-time Academy Award winner Ken Ralston and costume designer is two-time Oscar winner Colleen Atwood.

Read the Full Production Notes

Alice in Wonderland 3D Movie Poster

Alice in Wonderland 3D

Directed by: Tim Burton
Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Michael Sheen, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Crispin Glover, Christopher Lee, Matt Lucas
Screenplay by: Linda Woolverton
Production Design by: Robert Stromberg
Cinematography by: Dariusz Wolski
Film Editing by: Chris Lebenzon
Music by: Danny Elfman
Costume Design by: Colleen Atwood
Set Decoration by: Karen O’Hara
MPAA Rating: PG for fantasy action / violence involving scary images and situations, and for a smoking caterpillar.
Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
Release Date: March 5, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , , , , ,

All Good Things Full Production Notes

All Good Things Movie

All Good Things is a mystery / crime romantic drama film directed by Andrew Jarecki starring Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst. Inspired by the life of accused murderer Robert Durst, the film chronicles the life of the wealthy son of a New York real estate tycoon, and a series of murders linked to him, as well as his volatile relationship with his wife and her subsequent unsolved disappearance.

All Good Things was filmed between April and July 2008 in Connecticut and New York. The film was originally scheduled for a July 24, 2009, release, but was further delayed with a limited release of December 3, 2010.

Robert Durst professed admiration for All Good Things and telephoned Jarecki after its release, offering to be interviewed, a conversation recorded and incorporated into the documentary. Durst would ultimately sit with Jarecki for more than 20 hours over a multi-year period, having not previously cooperated with journalistic media.

In February and March, 2015, director Jarecki’s six-part documentary miniseries, The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst, was shown on HBO, a premium American cable channel. Durst was arrested in New Orleans, Louisiana, on first degree murder charges the day before its final episode—in which he appeared to unintentionally confess to three murders—aired on March 15.

All Good Things Movie

About the Production

“If anything happens to me, don’t let him get away with it.” — Kathie Durst just before her unsolved disappearance

· A love affair that ends with a devastating missing-person’s case in New York City that cannot be solved.

· An execution-style killing in Los Angeles with no viable suspects.

· A dismembered corpse set adrift in a remote Texas bay.

These events, which began with the most notorious missing person’s case in New York history, were the inspiration behind ALL GOOD THINGS, a love story and murder mystery set against the backdrop of a New York real estate dynasty. The film stars Oscar nominee Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst, and Oscar® nominee Frank Langella, and was directed by Andrew Jarecki.

The film was inspired by the story of Robert Durst, scion of the wealthy Durst family. Mr. Durst was suspected of, but never tried for, the murder of his wife Kathie who disappeared in 1982 and was never found. To this day, despite multiple investigations and two other headline-making killings, Durst has never been convicted of a single murder and lives as a free, if haunted, man, having received $65 million to sever all ties to his family’s vast fortune. The original script for ALL GOOD THINGS was developed by Jarecki, Marc Smerling, and Marcus Hinchey and written by Smerling and Hinchey.

All Good Things Movie - Kirsten Dunst

“In constructing this film, we used extraordinary elements from the life of Robert Durst as the inspiration for a dramatic story of desire, family, obsession, and murder,” says Jarecki. “We didn’t try to replicate the exact history, but worked to capture the emotion and complexity of this love story turned unsolved mystery that has for years been kept hidden from public view.“

“While we extensively researched the Durst case as a way to ground the film in some of its most unique moments and events, and even discovered things about the case that were not known before, we also wanted to be free to explore all the possibilities: the ones known and the ones that could perhaps never be known” said Jarecki. “So we created characters with fictional names.” The main characters in the film are David and Katie Marks, and David’s father Sanford Marks.

Jarecki is renowned for his Oscar® nominated documentary CAPTURING THE FRIEDMANS – itself a probing, emotionally explosive examination of a family torn apart by secrets – and might have been expected to take a similar approach to ALL GOOD THINGS. But he turned in the opposite direction. He and his creative partner, Marc Smerling, felt that the events that inspired this film, which have been so resistant to extensive police and journalistic investigations, would require a completely different path. They set out to make a powerful cinematic experience, while also speculating on the nature of and connections between three crimes that have gone unpunished and have never been understood.

In the innovative ALL GOOD THINGS, Jarecki explores all three, using the narrative form of a suspense thriller, and recruited some of Hollywood’s most sought-after actors – Gosling, Dunst, and Langella — to bring the characters to life.

Jarecki explains: “For me, the most important thing was getting inside the heart and mind of a man who was suspected of involvement in three deaths over the course of thirty years. Whatever the truth is about his involvement, David Marks loses everyone who is closest to him – and most importantly his wife — the one woman who truly loved him for who he was and who he could have been. The woman who could have been his salvation. I wanted audiences to experience their love story at an emotional level, to gain some understanding of what went wrong, and that meant bringing the story to life in the way that only great actors can.”

Jarecki has long been interested in the elusiveness of human behavior – a theme that came to the fore in CAPTURING THE FRIEDMANS. But now, as he began the hybrid process of making ALL GOOD THINGS, storytelling itself became a means of investigation. “What was remarkable,” he goes on, “is that in the process of doing research for the film, developing the script, rehearsing the film with the actors and ultimately shooting it, we developed views about the original case that we had never before considered. The final story became very much about power and its proxy – money – and what happens when it takes over at the expense of love,” observes Jarecki. “When power becomes the priority in a family, it can destroy all the love, justice, and humanity it finds in its path.”

Jarecki and Smerling were first drawn into Robert Durst’s dark and twisting tale years ago, when it was fodder for a blaze of tabloid headlines. They always suspected there was much more to the story than the lurid, sensational elements that drew so much attention.

“I’m always curious about the human side of monster stories, in decoding the real, complicated life that lies behind extreme behavior,” Jarecki explains. “Robert Durst, the man who inspired the character of David Marks, was presented as an almost burlesque figure in the media – this cross-dressing, fantastically rich, eccentric maniac – but when we began to research him, we found he started out as a guy we all can recognize, someone with hopes and dreams and a desire to have a good life. He met this girl from a modest family on Long Island, so far from sophisticated world he had inhabited as a young man, and fell in love. And for a time, she helped to make him a better person.”

Gosling’s portrayal of the film’s protagonist, David Marks, brings tremendous depth to the character. Abandoned by his mother who committed suicide when the boy was only seven, he came from a family of frozen emotion, where money and power were paramount. “At the start of our story, love seemed to have unlocked him; to have opened up dreams of a better kind of life, of greater peace, if only for a moment, and then his fateful decision to return to the his father’s world broke everything apart.”

Jarecki increasingly saw his two main characters, David and Katie Marks, as grappling, in different ways, with the conflicts between a yearning for love and the drive of ambition. “David was someone who was always at risk because of his family history and the damage that was done to him psychologically at a young age, but there was a real person there at one point, the person who went to Vermont with Katie full of hope for a life that would finally allow him love, a life that would put love above the ambition of his powerful father,” says the director. “His tragic error in judgment was returning to work for his father, and sacrificing his heart for a world that meant nothing to him.”

He continues: “Katie, on the other hand, was drawn not only to David, in spite of his problems, but to a world that she felt would free her to be all that she wanted to be. Both things can be true: that Katie was an innocent young girl who fell in love with someone irresistibly different; at the same time, she was also ambitious and wanted the opportunities of a life in Manhattan, far beyond what she had seen growing up in Mineola, Long Island.“ Adds Hinchey: “They were attracted to the opposites in each other. She liberated him from these social chains that had always been part of his life and he offered her the allure of a life she aspired to. It was a very romantic, complicated relationship that became dangerous. You see in their story how quickly a relationship can take on a perilous spiral.”

Equally intriguing to the filmmakers was the volatile, pressurized relationship between father and son – as the son inevitably follows the questionable choices of his elder.

Continues Smerling: “These were personal themes to us, because Andrew and I both had strong-willed patriarchs in our family.” (Smerling and Jarecki have been friends since grammar school.) He continues “We were both very aware of the kind of pressure that can be created in families when there are high expectations that you will follow in your father’s footsteps and add to the family’s fortunes. In the case of David Marks, it may have been more pressure than he could stand. The tragedy is that he winds up so far from where he imagined himself as a young man.”

A psychological question that came up repeatedly for the filmmakers was why the character of Katie would stay with David, even after an abusive cycle of violent episodes had begun. It’s a question that seems to arise in real-life again and again, whenever smart, successful, even powerful, women reveal abuse by a husband or lover.

“This kind of ambiguity can be uncomfortable for us to accept, but again, I believe two things can be true at once,” says Jarecki. “I think Katie could passionately love David and at the same time fear how he treats her. I think for years, she felt that she was helping him to evolve. Early on, she knew he had psychological issues, but she loved him and was going to stand by him. Later, recognizing that he won’t allow her to realize her dream of becoming a mother, she resolves to develop herself, enters medical school, and begins to find success on her own. But when the relationship becomes untenable, she finds herself trapped, unwilling to leave him and give up everything she’s worked for. At that point, she becomes dangerously disconnected from her own survival instincts.” Things deteriorate to the point that one rainy night in 1982, Katie disappears.

After Katie’s supposed disappearance, David’s life changes radically, (as was also the case for Robert Durst, who eventually drifted to the backwater of Galveston, Texas to escape the scrutiny of a renewed investigation into the case eighteen years later). Jarecki calls Galveston “the very edge of America – the last place you go before you slip off the radar.” There, Marks drops out of sight, living in a three hundred dollar-a-month apartment, dressing as a woman, pretending to be mute.

David tells us in court that he saw dressing as a woman as the most practical disguise he could think of — a simple way to leave his old identity behind: “It seemed to me the problem was David Marks. I just didn’t want to be David Marks anymore.”

All Good Things Movie Poster

All Good Things

Directed by: Andrew Jarecki
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst, Frank Langella, Lily Rabe, Philip Baker Hall, Kristen Wiig, Liz Stauber, Marion McCorry
Screenplay by: Marcus Hinchey, Marc Smerling
Production Design by: Wynn Thomas
Cinematography by: Michael Seresin
Film Editing by: David Rosenbloom, Shelby Siegel
Costume Design by: Michael Clancy
Set Decoration by: Rich Devine
Music by: Rob Simonsen
MPAA Rating: R for drug use, violence, language and some sexuality.
Studio: The Weinstein Company
Release Date: December 3, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , ,

All Good Things

All Good Things Movie

Taglines: The perfect love story. Until it became the perfect crime.

Inspired by the most notorious missing person’s case in New York history, All Good Things is a love story and murder mystery set against the backdrop of a New York real estate dynasty in the 1980s. The drama portrayed in Jarecki’s film was inspired by the story of Robert Durst, scion of the wealthy Durst family. Mr. Durst was suspected but never tried for killing his wife Kathie who disappeared in 1982 and was never found.

“In constructing the film, we used some of the extraordinary elements of the Durst case as the skeleton and inspiration for a drama about love, family, and obsession,” says Jarecki. “Because it is impossible to know exactly what happened, we have not tried to replicate the history of the case, but to capture the emotion and complexity of this unsolved mystery that has for years been kept hidden from public view.

The film stars Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst and Frank Langella as the powerful patriarch. The film is directed and produced by Andrew Jarecki, (Academy Award-nominated Capturing the Friedmans, upcoming Universal / Rogue release Catfish), and produced by Marc Smerling (Capturing the Friedmans, Catfish). It was also produced by Michael London, and Bruna Papandrea and financed by London’s Groundswell Productions. The Weinstein Company is handling foreign sales of the film.

Read the Full Production Notes

All Good Things Movie Poster

All Good Things

Directed by: Andrew Jarecki
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst, Frank Langella, Lily Rabe, Philip Baker Hall, Kristen Wiig, Liz Stauber, Marion McCorry
Screenplay by: Marcus Hinchey, Marc Smerling
Production Design by: Wynn Thomas
Cinematography by: Michael Seresin
Film Editing by: David Rosenbloom, Shelby Siegel
Costume Design by: Michael Clancy
Set Decoration by: Rich Devine
Music by: Rob Simonsen
MPAA Rating: R for drug use, violence, language and some sexuality.
Studio: The Weinstein Company
Release Date: December 3, 2010

Tags : , , , , , , , ,