Amidst the ensuing carnage wrought by Lee Daniels‘ urine-splashed, Southern-fried courtroom drama The Paperboy, a casualty has been found. The Oscar-nominated director has been hard at work on his fourth film, The Butler, having assembled a cast far better than the reputation of his latest work would suggest: Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, Jane Fonda, David Oyelowo, Alan Rickman, John Cusack, Nicole Kidman, Cuba Gooding Jr., Terrence Howard, Minka Kelly, and Lenny Kravitz.
Matthew McConaughey was on that list (he would be playing John F. Kennedy), but, in an interview with 24Frames, he laid out the current situation pretty clearly: “[I]t’s not going to happen for me.” Although some more concrete notes on the departure weren’t supplied — he only said it’s for “certain true reasons,” whatever that even means — it’s cleared room to develop a film much closer to his heart.
That’s The Dallas Buyer’s Club, a true-life account of Texas native Ron Woodroof; his contraction of HIV in the ’80s led the man to a career of “importing experimental foreign remedies in the early days of the AIDS epidemic.” The arc at play is rather unconventional: From, in McConaughey‘s own words, “a homophobe redneck cowboy” to an FDA enemy in cahoots “with a transsexual assistant.”
In addition to making some proper physical preparations for the role, he’s been working on a script with Canadian director (and possibly helmer) Jean-Marc Vallee. And it might be the right time to do so. While the subject matter and period setting have, up to this point, been stopgaps in Dallas‘ development — Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, Marc Forster, and Craig Gillespie were all circling beforehand — the actor says that a few current projects (Magic Mike, possibly) are creating forward movement on the film. If his heart’s in the right place and he can continue this mini-resurrection all at once? A lot of people go home happy.
Is it a smart move to drop The Butler? What do you hope to see McConaughey do with Dallas Buyer’s Club?
Welcome to the latest episode of our official podcast, The Film Stage Show. This week, editor Nick Newman, writer Danny King, and I dive right into Richard Linklater‘s 12-year intimate epic Boyhood. After that, we take a look at the films coming to theaters and home video in the coming week, including Noah, Twin Peaks: The Entire Mystery, Guardians of the […]
Since any New York City cinephile has a nearly suffocating wealth of theatrical options, we figured it’d be best to compile some of the more worthwhile repertory showings into one handy list. Displayed below are a few of the city’s most reliable theaters and links to screenings of their weekend offerings — films you’re not […]
In the case of evaluating David Cronenberg, — or at least forming the sort of career narrative seemingly essential to auteurist analysis — it’s inevitable to propose something of a rupture within his oeuvre: the very evident graduation from grindhouse to arthouse, and, with it, an ascension from body to mind. What dictated these labels […]
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