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Oliver Stone Picks Up Rights to Edward Snowden Feature; Ensemble Gather for Omnibus ‘Petersburg’

Written by on June 2, 2014 

Screen Shot 2014-06-02 at 1.21.26 PM

Here’s the least-surprising pairing of director and material we’ve yet seen this year: The Guardian are reporting that Oliver Stone will bring Edward Snowden‘s much-publicized, highly controversial tale to the screen, adapting The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Wanted Man. That book, recently published under the credit of Guardian reporter Luke Harding, provides what you’d expect — Amazon‘s description promises an account of “the day he left his glamorous girlfriend in Honolulu carrying a hard drive full of secrets, to the weeks of his secret-spilling in Hong Kong, to his battle for asylum and his exile in Moscow” — though one hopes Stone, even with a spotty record of late, makes it more than a how-we-live-now thriller à la The Fifth Estate. Some of the manic madness that powered Nixon (particularly with that film’s focus on media-created image in mind) would be awfully nice.

Things should become a bit clearer before too long, given that Sony have recently optioned Glenn Greenwald‘s No Place to Hide and thus shooting is expected to commence by year’s end. (Casting suggestions have already popped up!) Odd as it may seem, the man who was once the world’s most popular political filmmaker might be something of an underdog.

Ralph+Fiennes+Grand+Budapest+Hotel+Press+Conference+X2XyHdjxu4OlIn ScreenDaily, we have word that several directors are combining forces for a Russia-set omnibus picture by the title of Petersburg: A Category Of Feelings. Somewhat akin to the [City], I Love You series — but separate from an already announced Saint Petersburg, I Love You — it asks the team “to present their views of the ‘Venice of the North’ through emotions or qualities whose first letters make up the city’s name: Pleasure, Effort, Trust, Envy, Repose, Shrewdness, Bravery, Uncertainty, Refuge and Glee.” Up to the task are Ralph Fiennes, Sam Rockwell, Timur Bekmambetov, Todd Solondz, Avdotya Smirnova, Bakur Bakuradze, Cedric Klapisch, Igor Voloshin, Ilmar Raag, and the project’s “artistic director,” Fedor Bondarchuk. Further notes on content remain undisclosed for the time being.

"The Adjustment Bureau" Premiere  in New YorkA different sort of biopic is brewing at Groundswell Productions and QED International, who’ve tapped George Nolfi (The Adjustment Bureau) for Birth of the Dragon — following, as you can already presume, none other than Bruce Lee. When development was announced last year, it was said that Stephen J. Rivele and Christopher Wilkinson (Ali, Nixon) would be scripting an account of when he, as a young man, had a San Francisco Chinatown brawl staged against famed fighter Wong Jack Man, “China’s most famous kung fu master at [the] time.” Taking the perspective of a disciple, Steve Macklin, who joins Lee for “a wider-canvas action movie in which Wong and Lee team up to battle a band of Chinatown gangsters.” Even the life of a legendary action star needs to be embellished for the purposes of modern action cinema. [Variety]

Production is to commence next year.

Finally, ShowBiz411 have news that Cary Fukunaga will executive produce Black Kid for director Rob Meyer, star Toni Collette, and a “name black actor” who’s yet to be cast. From a script by Annie J. Howell, the picture concerns “a mixed-race 12-year-old who moves from the city to Idaho with his parents; one assumes that various tensions arise from this, because, otherwise, you might not have much of a film.

Which of these projects are you most intrigued by?


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