Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Yes, No, Maybe?


Hi, Jonathan again with more biopic news. That's Orson Welles on the left and Christian McKay on the right. McKay will be portraying Welles in Me and Orson Welles, set for a 2009 release. Does he look like him? Uh, kinda. McKay's already successfully played Welles on the Broadway stage in Rosebud so I'm not as worried about him as I am about his co-star Zac Efron. I've seen the High School Musicals (yes, god help me I've seen them) and Zac was none too impressive in them but perhaps with a good cast and a good story things will be different. After all, both Richard Linklater and Claire Danes are involved and that could make for a damn good movie. Since I'm obsessed with period pieces based on real people in Hollywood history it's a must see for me either way (this takes place in the thirties during a Mercury Theater Production of Julius Caesar). If you're interested too a word of caution: tread carefully at IMDB - their plot synopsis covers every twist and turn and takes you from the beginning of the story to the end leaving out absolutely nothing ( I already knew the story so it was okay for me but geez).

15 comments:

criticlasm said...

The real question is: who is playing Agnes Moorehead?

Jonathan Lapper said...

No one is listed in the credits for Moorehead but the others are Ben Chaplin as George Coulouris, Eddie Marsan as John Houseman and James Tupper as Joseph Cotten.

Krauthemmer said...

I love Orson Welles so damn much that I will be ecstatic if this is great and terribly, terribly angry if it fails. I like Linkletter well enough, and I want to know more about the "Fascist Julius Caesar" than I already do.

But if we have a biopic(ish), wouldn't it be best put to use to counter the slander Welles has been subject to since, well, 1941? reaffirm him as a genius who was more wronged against than wrong, with amazing talent that lasts right until the end. Probably will never happen, but maybe here he will be portrayed more sympathetically.

Oh, and James Tupper (of Corky Romano and Joe Dirt fame) playing Joseph Cotten?!

Jonathan Lapper said...

Krauthammer - I'm with you. I've read all the Welles biographies, being obsessed with him, and he's never been portrayed accurately on film. In all the biographies he comes across as brash but real, charming and a good friend to his actors and comrades in arms. Yet in the movies he's some big thug throwing his weight around.

Sadly, if you know the story of this it's once again a negative, selfish portrayal. Alas.

John T said...

I am obsessed with Welles, so I am so pysched for this. I think the single greatest film festival anyone could ever throw for themselves would be Citizen Kane, The Third Man, and Touch of Evil (in that order). Brilliant all, and if you throw in some Chianti and ravioli, you've got yourself a night!

Jonathan Lapper said...

John t - God I love those three movies. I think Touch of Evil is my favorite of all Welles pictures.

Beau said...

It's Richard Linklater.

After 'Waking Life', 'Dazed and Confused' and (most especially) the 'Before...' films, everything this man releases is, at the very least, fascinating to watch. It may fail, but damn if you aren't involved every minute of the running time.

And I REALLY want Danes to have her major breakthrough. Had someone else directed 'Evening', we would've had such a treat with the entire film and her performance, especially. Sadly, that was not to be.

...I'm still amazed by how terribly awkward that entire picture is. It still astounds me.

Jonathan Lapper said...

Yeah, it's definitely Linklater and Danes that have me excited as I said in the post. I think Danes is a fantastic actress and I don't know why she hasn't received more recognition. And Linklater too for that matter.

John T said...

Touch of Evil is heaven, I could talk about it for hours. Janet Leigh alone in the country, that opening shot, the first meeting between Dietrich and Welles, the ending-there are endless reasons to love this movie. Imagine if Welles would have been able to continue on with his genius films instead of making wine commercials, think what we could have witnessed-Welles in New Hollywood, Welles in the age of Coppola, Welles takes on Vietnam. What could have been...

NATHANIEL R said...

I was once someone who thought Danes was a fantastic actress but I'm sad to say that I haven't seen any real evidence of that in about a decade. She started so strong... but now? I thought she was plain old terrible in Evening... all fidgety and unconvincing in the period.

Jonathan Lapper said...

Well I didn't want to admit to it but I have not seen Evening. However she is playing ****SPOILERS**** selfish and treacherous in this film, using people for her own gain. Maybe it's a side of Claire that Linklater discovered and will bring her to the forefront again. Maybe she's just been playing nice too long.

Billy D said...

Is no one else bothered that it should be "Orson Welles and I", or at least "Orson Welles and Me?"

Billy D said...

Is no one else bothered that it should be "Orson Welles and I", or at least "Orson Welles and Me?"

Jonathan Lapper said...

billy d - you're not alone. The same thing struck me.

Neel Mehta said...

Some actors look too modern to work in period pieces, and I think Zac Efron is one of them. I'm just not seeing it.