Saturday, May 13, 2006

Bier for Berry

This woman to your left is one of the best actors directors working. It's Susanne Bier of Open Hearts and Brothers fame. Both of those films are Danish productions but Hollywood has been circling Bier for at least a couple of years now. In fact Open Hearts is now slated to be remade in English as Zach Braff's Garden State followup.

Bier's first English language production was supposed to be Chasing Montana and bring with it the return of Michelle Pfeiffer. Unfortunately that film seems forever mired in some kind of development hell (be it noncommital of actors, lack of studio passion, who knows). In the latest Entertainment Weekly they have a tidbit about a new Bier project:

Danish import Susanne Bier will direct Halle Berry in Things We Lost in the Fire, about a woman who loses her husband and asks his unstable best friend (Benicio Del Toro) to move in.

If that sounds suspiciously like Brothers in its character triangle, widow with husband surrogate and potential for all kinds of dramatic tear wringing, well, so be it... the Danish director knows this emotional territory. This makes me think that I was wrong about Halle Berry being one of those actresses who wins an Oscar never to even be nominated again. You know what i'm talking about: the AMPAS novelty act. Berry just got lucky or was smart about signing on with Bier.

Susanne Bier is exactly the type of actor-focused emotionally potent director that would get her actors nominations should she ever actually make this move across the pond. However, if she made an English language film as good as Brothers [on last year's film experience top ten list -ed.] she'd probably end up like Todd Field from In the Bedroom in 2001: nominations for the cast but not for the egoless director guiding them.

tags: Halle Berry, movies, Denmark, Oscars

10 comments:

John T. said...

I actually thought that Hilary Swank & Charlize Theron might fall into the trap as well (how wrong was I?)

Though I was right about Helen Hunt!

Kamikaze Camel said...

I thought Hilary wouldn't because she didn't really have a career before Boys Don't Cry. Charlize I also didn't think would because around the time of Monster there was already talk of more Oscary type stuff.

I'm glad if Berry starts doing good stuff because that way I won't feel so bitter about her winning the Oscar. As it stands it's one of my least favourite wins ever. I didn't like her or the movie itself and that she beat so many much more worthy contenders is disgusting.

But...

adam k. said...

Yeah, funny, all the seeming "novelty acts" from the past few years (Swank, Theron, Berry) seem to be deliberately avoiding that status. Berry probably knows she is in danger, hence this move. Please stop making Gothikas and Catwomans, Halle. Ugh.

Peter Nellhaus said...

I finally saw Brothers on DVD a few months ago and had to wonder why the Academy totally ignored the film and Connie Nielsen.

NATHANIEL R said...

what's worse Peter is that Denmark even ignored it. It would have made a great Oscar submission for the Foreign Language category.

Anonymous said...

Nat,

Do you think Gwynnie is an AMPAS novelty act? I would have said no a few years ago but...

M

NATHANIEL R said...

based on her taste in material I'd say Paltrow has another nomination in her. She's just got to find the right director/project.

she plays in the oscar friendly sandbox way too often for them to ignore her forever.

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