Directed by some unknown ...goes by "Peter Jackson" (name?)
Starring Briony from Atonement, Sgt Dignam from The Departed and Mrs. Darren Aronofsky
Synopsis A murder victim watches her killer and family from heaven
Brought to you by Dreamworks, Paramount and Wingnut Films
Expected Release Date Post-production is apparently going to go long on this one. We're hearing March 2009. Damn. Defeats the point of it being on this list. sigh
Nathaniel: For those who lived under a rock back when The Lovely Bones was a bestseller it's about a girl (Saoirse Ronan) who is murdered --no spoiler, just the plot setup --and watches her parents (Mark Wahlberg & Rachel Weisz) and the murderer from her afterlife as the murder investigation unfolds and her family deals with their substantial grief. Though the novel teeters close to gooey sentiment here and there, I really enjoyed it when I read it.
When I heard that Peter Jackson was taking the reigns I thought "ooh, great. something small. something young girl focused --something to remind me of how great Heavenly Creatures was" and then I thought. Er... King Kong was so bloated as if The Lord of the Rings (which I loved) had ruined his notions of scale and dramatic precision... and couldn't The Lovely Bones go really overboard with its visualization of heaven. And then I began to worry...
Glenn: I have not read the book - perhaps I will this year - so I don't really know what to expect. To be honest, the idea of a girl looking down from heaven sounds a bit like a kooky comedy that would have starred Whoopi Goldberg in that period of the '90s where she made a lot of movies like Eddie and The Associate. Perhaps her character had lost a lot of money on wall street and decided she didn't want to live so Heaven sent somebody down to SWAP with her so she could experience what it was like only to learn that if she ended her life she would never be able to meet the love of her life or hold her grandchild!
...wait. I got off track there. I'm looking forward to The Lovely Bones mostly for Jackson's return to (hopefully, natch) intimate filmmaking. And maybe Saiorse Ronan can continue to prove she's actually a 75-year-old woman in a child's body! That gives me another idea for a wacky comedy..
MaryAnn: Haven't read the book, but I'm onboard for *anything* Peter Jackson does. And after Atonement, I can't wait to see if Saoirse Ronan was a one-hit wonder or if she's got real staying power.
Gabriel: Glenn, I've been laughing for five minutes at your Whoopi Goldberg career summation. :-) However, my guess is that this movie will try to mix magic into its murder story, rather than comedy...it's a fragile story with delicate story points, and too much humor would probably kill it. I personally am intrigued to see Mark Wahlberg, who hopped into the film at the last minute when Ryan Gosling dropped out. But if there's anyone who thinks this isn't going to be successful, I offer this formula: Peter Jackson + Bestselling Book + Likeable Stars + Oscar Contender=Box Office Hit.
Nathaniel: Joe sat this discussion out. Perhaps he knew not to expect this until 2009? It's filming now. Have you read the book? Are you ready for a Jackson drama after all these fantasy epics?
<-- Sister Aloysius prays for your wicked soul if you haven't been reading the "we can't wait" countdown #1 Synecdoche, New York / #2 Burn After Reading / #3 Australia / #4 Milk / #5 Blindness / # 6 Doubt / #7 The Curious Case of Benjamin Button / #8 Revolutionary Road / #9 The Dark Knight / #10 Sex & The City: The Movie / #11 The Lovely Bones / #12 Wall-E / #13 Stop-Loss / #14 The Women / #15 Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince / Introduction / Orphans