May 23, 2010

What Did And Didn't Happen At Cannes 2010

Much criticism has been thrown at Nicole Kidman, from the skeptics and haters, that she wasn't at Cannes. Two films she passed on, Fair Game and You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger have screened there. Of course the haters will also point out that Naomi Watts, Nicole's friend is in both of them. Another Aussie friend Russell Crowe has a film at Cannes, the Ridley Scott version of Robin Hood. In the real world none of this matters. What her friends do isn't going to hurt Nicole or help her. But the skeptics think their opinion, based upon nothing but hate, matters. Let's take a look....

Mimosa:Isn't it interesting that Cate and Russell are in Cannes with a new movie that is said to be wonderful,while Granny Freeze is doing a bad Hula in one of those awful Adam Sandler movies that will only be seen by middle schoolers. Sometimes things do work out right in the movie industry...

Isn't it a shame when idiots have a forum to post whatever they want. Clearly Mimosa knows nothing about the latest Russell/Ridley pairing, or film in general. The biggest criticism of the film is that RH takes itself too seriously. Well anyone who knows Crowe and Scott and their personalities can see this could be a problem. The fun they had together on A Good Year, is completely absent. It is a well-made, well-acted film but is it the Robin Hood many of us wanted to see? No. We'd also like to mention, just for accuracy's sake, the 45% meter rating it received on Rotten Tomatoes and a little story. We know Mimosa won't share because she's too busy looking for rumors and lies about Nicole and Keith. There was a story circulating online that Ridley Scott would not be attending the premiere of Robin Hood at Cannes because he was embarrassed by his own film. Sounds like another silly rumor started by skeptics, only without KUNK. The truth was that Scott had to have surgery and missing the event was unavoidable. But the internet doesn't care. The haters and naysayers continued to lie about the whole thing despite the fact Scott made a statement himself. So you see readers, the reality is just as we have suggested all along....Nicole isn't disliked by as many people as the skeptics say; the public doesn't agree with their disgusting lies. It's the age of the internet where certain people have decided they should make a hobby out of saying anything they want because they can.

So Mimosa, do you believe Roger Ebert when he says doesn't like Robin Hood? Because remember you dismissed his praise for Australia? BAHAHAHAHA!

Now we're off to the land of politics and Fair Game. Fair Game turned out to be a Naomi Watts / Sean Penn film instead of it's original incarnation with Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe. Personally STS wishes Nicole and Russell, if they are ever to work together, would be cast in a dark comedy instead of serious dramas. They certainly have the chemistry for it.

But let's see what Inept Team Maclen: Party of One has to say....

maclen: also interesting, that the "once" almost kidman starring valerie plame biopic, "Fair Game" is to debut at is the woodman's "You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger"...both passed on due to "scheduling conflicts" by kidman. So now Rabbit Hole, coming up on 9 months since filming ended, it would appear continues to languish in PostPro, missing an opportunity to be viewed at the highest profile film festival. I do seem to recall when the film was in postdevel last year...the film which had been dropped by fox searchlight for funding and distribution, got funded by a few no name agencies for the express purpose of getting the film placed on the "cannes marketplace" for possible distributors.

While ignoring the lies in that mess of a postFair Game has screened so let's talk. This blog is grateful that Nicole did not end up in the cast. First of all, the scheduling conflict applies to the Woody Allen film, not Fair Game. In fact Nicole was always rumored. She was never cast but was the main contender by the director, who at the time was also unsigned to the picture. Other talk was that Diane Lane or Virginia Madsen would play Valerie Plame. The real reasons of why Nicole did not do the film are unknown. However perhaps she felt she had already gone down the political thriller road. With The Interpreter, Nicole's chemistry with Sean Penn wasn't as good as Naomi and Sean in 21 Grams. But of course they had so few scenes together and their characters' relationship was tenuous at best. In the end, most films gain the cast they were meant to be with. Hopefully when the final decisions are made the roles end up with the right people.

So will the skeptics be able to convincingly sing the praises of Fair Game? Not likely. The positive reviews seem to be about as good as The Interpreter's. Considered a "serviceable" film, i.e. decent but not great, we'll see how the skeptics will spin this. Also how will they spin the boos it received at the Cannes screening?

And now for Woody Allen's You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. Another film at Cannes starring Naomi Watts in a large ensemble cast including Antonio Banderas and Anthony Hopkins. When the basic details of Allen's project came to light there was buzz. Would this be the return of vintage relationship comedy Woody, Husbands And Wives, Hannah And Her Sisters,Crimes And Misdemeanors...or reinvented celebrated Woody with Match Point? Then when Nicole Kidman was said to be added to the cast the excitement grew. Would she be in scenes with Naomi? Would they play rivals? Sisters? Well not exactly. As it turns out if Kidman had stayed with the film she would have been paired again with The Human Stain co-star Hopkins. Her part would have been akin to, and this is as best a comparison we can come up with without having seen the film yet, Sydney Pollack's girlfriend on the side, Sam the aerobics instructor. Now the skeptics might say how do we know this?

Well several months ago when the skeptics were busy starting new rumors Keith Urban was gay and ignoring the death threats from their favorite cohort Oh " so" Leery, we at STS and the fans were actually paying attention.

Here's a shot released from the film, with Hopkins and Lucy Punch, Nicole's replacement.

As you can see the role is more of a character part, the female that intrudes on already established relationships. Now while we would have loved to have seen Nicole in a Woody Allen film we aren't upset about the scheduling conflicts. How do you go from an on-screen relationship like the one she and Hopkins shared in Human Stain to something like what is shown in the above picture. Stain covers it all between the two of them. Such honesty in a picture that has always been underrated. There's no need to go there again. Our suggestion? Pair Paul Bettany and Nicole Kidman in a Woody Allen comedy about relationships. There was something interesting yet not completely explored from their time in Dogville.

Ultimately Tall Dark Stranger is getting mixed reviews. Allen seems to have hit the same mark as he did with Whatever Works. Not another Allen masterpiece, but not the disappointment of a complete failure.

So what have we learned here?

Tepid reviews without Nicole, the skeptics are silent. The smashing reviews that aren't happening would have been thrown back in her face. Tepid reviews with Nicole in the cast would have been all her fault.

If you've really been paying attention you'd notice how many actors and directors choose to work and try to work with Nicole on multiple projects. Doug Liman is probably still plotting his next move to get Nicole in one of his films.

We leave you with two excerpts from an interview with Sean Penn, Nicole Kidman, and the late Sydney Pollack...because you know, everyone in Hollywood hates Nicole Kidman! BAHAHAHAHA!

POLLACK: I had Nicole first, and I was trying very hard to find the actor who would disturb her--I mean, disturb the character. The movie takes place over five days, and there are five major scenes between these two characters, and each one is kind of a one-act play. They have to disturb each other in an attractive way. We didn't have a finished script until deep into the shooting, but I thought, O.K., I know Nic a little bit, I can be embarrassed by asking her to do a picture I don't have a script for. But I didn't know Sean that well. Am I going to fly up there like an a__hole and say do this thing for me without a script? In the end, I just admitted it. When I met him, I said, "If I were you, I wouldn't do this."

PENN: There wasn't a finished script, but you had a lot of good things. There was her, and, you know, you've already made 152 great movies. What is that, about a movie a year?


PENN: I sent you that note first 'cause I thought you were so great in that movie Buck Henry wrote [To Die For].

KIDMAN: That's right. You sent me a telegram, actually. But we met at a party. Whose party was it?

PENN: It was Princess Leia's [Carrie Fisher's] party, wasn't it?

KIDMAN: After To Die For, he sent me a lovely telegram, and to get that kind of encouragement early on in your career gives you much more confidence to do things that are unusual or a little bold or offbeat. The thing about Sean is that he has an incredibly generous spirit in terms of other people's work, particularly actors.


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