David Fincher

IntroFirstTimeDir

People don’t just get handed million-dollar blockbusters, nor do studios go door-to-door looking for someone to direct the next Jurassic Park. That’s why the following list of first time directors – while seemingly out of nowhere – certainly had backgrounds directing stuff like music videos or commercials.   Still – they were untested in feature filmmaking, and to the un-obsessed public it would appear that studios simply plucked a dude off the street. Like giving a small child a semi truck, the results were mixed.

read more...

This week’s starting off with a particularly weird piece of news. Gone Girl, the latest film from David Fincher, has just cast a major role – the mistress of Ben Affleck‘s lead character- and filled that particular role with Emily Ratajkowski. The name might not be too familiar, but chances are you’ve seen her before. Ratajkowski was one of several women prancing around half-naked in Robin Thicke’s insanely popular (174 million hits on YouTube popular) “Blurred Lines” music video. It’s an unconventional choice (“unconventional” being one of many possible descriptors), but Gone Girl already has several names attached who aren’t known for serious dramatic performances. Both Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry have come aboard the film, and presumably neither of them will be doing the comedic shtick that made them famous in the first place. So perhaps Gone Girl will be a showcase for actors of all stripes to prove their dramatic chops. Or maybe Ratajkowski has some serious acting ability that doesn’t come across in a music video where she dances around without a shirt on.

read more...

Fight Club

Quick! Think of a beloved, bold, classic, cult film with Oscar caliber performance and craft that you’d never want to see remade or reimagined. Now imagine the medium you’d never want to see that film remade or reimagined within. Was your answer Dirty Dancing as a web series? First of all, no, that’s the wrong answer and, second of all, that sounds delightfully terrible. No, the right answer was Fight Club and “graphic novel.” Too bad. In the crush of the weekend’s massive influx of Comic-Con news, an announcement from author Chuck Palahniuk got a bit lost in the fray, and it’s finally managed to get around days later. Palahniuk appeared at the convention for a number of reasons – to sign books for fans, to appear on a panel called “Ode to Nerds,” to clearly be very good to his admirers, and to slyly announce that he’s working on a sequel to his “Fight Club.” The author slipped the news in during his panel when asked what he was working on next, and while it’s heartening that it’s Palahniuk who is working on this so-called sequel, we’re finding it very hard indeed to get excited about the potential for any sort of follow-up to his original vision, particularly in graphic novel form. Collider passed along the news, straight from the author’s official site (called “The Cult”) about the process of the new novel and the bare bones of Palahniuk’s vision for it. If you’re not interested in getting clear-cut […]

read more...

news fincher future

No, I will not be apologizing for that title. David Fincher is having a pretty newsworthy week thanks to the recent confirmation that his follow-up to 2011’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo will be another literary thriller adaptation. He’s heading into pre-production on Gone Girl based on Gillian Flynn’s bestseller with star Ben Affleck and an as-yet unnamed female lead, but while that’s exciting news it leaves a couple questions hanging limply in the air. Will we still see the Dragon Tattoo sequel, The Girl Who Played With Fire hit screens in the near future? And for the love of god can we finally sink the idea of Fincher wasting his time on a 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea remake once and for all? Happily, the answer to both questions appears to be yes.

read more...

affleck-fincher

The image you see above you was recently taken when A-list directors Ben Affleck and David Fincher were spotted sitting down to have a high-powered lunch together. What were the two movers and shakers discussing? The finer points of putting together a film? How good the tiramisu was at the cafe that day? No, most likely they were discussing a Gillian Flynn novel called “Gone Girl,” and what it would take it turn it into a movie. If you’ll recall, back in January it was reported that Fincher was quite possibly looking to direct an adaptation of the book, though it wasn’t quite clear where it would fit into his confusing schedule. Well, a report out of Deadline now claims that, due to his shadowy lunch with Affleck, Gone Girl is officially a go, and it’s officially going to be Fincher’s next film.

read more...

20000 Leagues Under the Sea

Despite persistent reports that director David Fincher was looking to again team up with Brad Pitt for his 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, THR now reports that those rumors were “incorrect” and Pitt is not attached to the project. The outlet blames “local reports” which, paired with the news that the project may film in Australia, conjure up images of charming small-town Oz papers filled with breathless buzz that Pitt might be coming to an ocean near them, though the first news of potential casting came out of Variety. The news that Pitt is not set to lead the project doesn’t come with any further casting speculation, but with such a giant potential tentpole production at stake, it’s reasonable to assume that Disney and Fincher will still be looking for another big star to lead the project. THR also reports that the Australian government is on deck to offer up Disney a generous locations rebate that would amount to nearly $20m in savings for the massive project. Disney executives are reportedly finalizing the deal before giving the long-gestating project the green light.

read more...

House of Cards

The similar structure of their titles isn’t the only thing Game of Thrones and the new Netflix series House of Cards have in common. The first is set in a brutal Medieval-style fantasy world, and the second is set in present-day Washington, DC, but the scheming and lustful grabs at power are pulsing wildly at the heart of each. Of course they have their differences as well. Since Cards focuses on House Majority Whip Francis Underwood (Kevin Spacey), it’s maybe more exact to call it a version of Game of Thrones told almost explicitly through Tywin Lannister’s point of view. The congressman is aggressive and shrewd in his search to become President, but as the complete 13-episode season of the show (or 13-hour movie-you-have-to-keep-pressing-play-to-see) proves, there are other combatants willing to protect their interests just as fiercely and just as intelligently.

read more...

HOUSE OF CARDS

Television-after-television had to happen at some point. Of course, television-like content that is exclusively available on the Internet isn’t anything new – webisodes have been a thing for quite some time now. What is new about Netflix’s House of Cards is the fact a program under the rubric of “quality television” – a category of prestige televisual entertainment established by HBO, Showtime, AMC, and some broadcast programs – has now been made available exclusively on the Internet. Not only is House of Cards exclusively on the Internet, but it’s only available via a single subscription outlet. Now that it’s premiered, what could its existence (and potential success) imply for the future of both television programming and what’s now expected of audiences? Furthermore, if a program exists independently of televisions altogether, what exactly do we consider to be “television” now? House of Cards has all the trappings of a heavily promoted HBO program. It’s got high production value, a name cast, and a well-known director at the helm. In other words, like anything from Luck to Boardwalk Empire, House of Cards has cinematic credentials: sleek, medium-shot-heavy cinematography, and marquee names like Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, and David Fincher. It’s television tailor-made for the age of letterbox HD broadcasts and DVR. It just isn’t on television.

read more...

dragon tat

The Girl Who Played With Fire hasn’t exactly been a fast-tracked project over at Sony. Since the 2011 release of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, things have been slow on the sequel front. Screenwriter Steve Zaillian has a ready-to-go script, but Sony hasn’t been keen on sinking another $90m into the project. That was the cost of the first movie, and while it did make over $230m worldwide, it wasn’t the major hit everyone was hoping for. Now Sony has another reason – or possibly an excuse – to stall. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Daniel Craig ‘s asking price for the sequel is too high for their taste. They didn’t specify how much Craig wants, but coming off the billion dollar success of Skyfall, it’s logical to guess he wants a good chunk of change. Billion dollar box office aside, why would Sony give in? Craig isn’t exactly a box office star, he’s James Bond. Looking over his recent filmography, Dream House, Cowboys & Aliens, The Golden Compass, Defiance, and The Invasion, none of those films proved Craig’s presence equal success when he’s not playing an iconic spy.

read more...

David Fincher

Have you been wondering where David Fincher has disappeared to since he directed the English-language version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo? Well, you can thank Disney for that. The A-list director was supposed to be putting together a new version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea for them, but the process has proved to be more challenging than anyone would have liked. According to Variety, Disney has had a hold on Fincher for the last three months as they try and decide if they still want to go forward with the film. A large part of the problem seems to be securing a big name star to anchor the project, with Fincher wanting Brad Pitt and not yet being able to land him. The good news is, our wait for the next Fincher movie may soon be over. While it’s possible that 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea could still be his next job, he’s now started looking around for something else to do. More specifically, he’s negotiating with Fox to direct their upcoming adaptation of the Gillian Flynn novel “Gone Girl.” The rights for this one were so hot that Fox had to pay seven figures to keep it out of the clutches of Universal when it went on the market last summer, so it would make sense that they would look to one of the industry’s top directors, like Fincher, to bring the whole thing together.

read more...

According to Variety, Disney has put David Fincher‘s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea on hold for three months while they decide whether they want to make it or not. In a way, it’s understandable considering the size of the investment, but Fincher might have a trick up his sleeve in frequent collaborator Brad Pitt. It’s reported that the director is hunting down the actor (who’s appeared in three other Fincher films) to take on the harpooning role played by Kirk Douglas in the 1954 version of Jules Verne’s novel. The question becomes whether that will be enough to grab the greenlight. Here’s the funny thing: neither Fincher nor Pitt are necessarily known for bringing in massive amounts of cash. That may seem counterintuitive considering Pitt’s profile especially, but neither are huge money earners despite critical acclaim and a metric ton of tabloid covers. If it did move the needle for Disney, the next question becomes whether Pitt is really right for the role. The novel describes Canadian master harpooner Ned Land as peerless and possessing “an uncommon quickness of hand.” He’s a large man, “taciturn [and] occasionally violent.” That combination of stoicism and rage could be a fantastic challenge for Pitt who, for the most part these days, usually plays himself with Clooney-like ease. With Fincher making him do 99 takes for every scene, it could get Brando on set really quick, and that could create something amazing. Let’s hope Disney feels like taking a risk.

read more...

Donuts Bitch

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news column that brings you only the best. Or the rest. At this point, it could go either way. It’s important to start your day off right with a hearty breakfast. After a long night of binge drinking and carefully placing typos in this very column (I know you’re watching), I often wake up feeling pretty rough. So a good breakfast is huge in my world. What could be better than some Breaking Bad blue meth donuts? No one motivates like Heisenberg. Donuts, bitch.

read more...

Perhaps it’s time that we all faced facts – this Cleopatra remake just might not happen. In reality, it shouldn’t happen – after all, is anyone really demanding an Angelina Jolie-starring and supposedly more “relatable” take on the Egyptian pharaoh? – but Sony seems bound and determined to keep on with this project, even though no less than three high profile directors have left the project in one way or another. Vulture reports that David Fincher is the latest to jump ship (joining both James Cameron, who was loosely attached back in 2010, and Paul Greengrass, who seemed like a lock in 2011, on the list), after talks with Sony ended. It’s unknown when Fincher left, though he was still talking about the project back in December, and it’s also unclear why Fincher and Sony couldn’t work it out. The outlet does sagely point to the “somewhat cloudy” relationship between the studio and the director, given that Fincher has delivered to them both a huge hit (The Social Network) and a resounding miss (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo). Yet, perhaps this will allow Fincher to sign on for the Dragon Tattoo sequel we’re expecting in 2014 (at the earliest). As for a replacement for Cleopatra? Vulture also reports that the studio is looking to others, including Ang Lee, who has not entered into anything resembling a formal discussion with the studio.

read more...

Culture Warrior

For filmgoers frustrated with a visionary filmmaker whose films’ quality provided diminishing returns as he became ever more prolific, Prometheus was anticipated as a welcome return to form. For those hungry for R-rated, thinking person’s science fiction, Prometheus provided a welcome respite from a summer promising mostly routine franchise continuations. For those who see the 1970s and 1980s as the height of modern Hollywood filmmaking, Prometheus promised a homecoming for a type of blockbuster that was long thought to be dead. Prometheus even beat out The Dark Knight Rises as the most anticipated summer film of 2012 on this very site. But then the reviews came in. And thus began the qualifying, criticizing, parsing out, hyperbolizing, dissecting, backlashing, and disappointed exhaling. There were many responses to Prometheus, but very few of them were the songs of praise that a film this hotly anticipated – and highly desired – by all means should have satisfyingly warranted.

read more...

Science fiction has long been considered by some experts to be a lesser genre than traditional dramas and character studies. Because it lends itself so easily to exploitation, science fiction isn’t always given the respect it deserves. Sure, it tends to be a box office winner, as evidenced by the fact that more than half of the all-time domestic grossing films fit easily in that genre (with at least two more – Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Shrek 2 – marginally related as genre films). Still, some still consider science fiction something not to be taken seriously. It is for this reason that “legitimate” film directors might shy away from science fiction in lieu of more important or significant projects. However, many directors got their start or their earliest fame from working in science fiction and other allegedly exploitative and pulp genres. This week’s release of Prometheus reminds us that even though Ridley Scott has directed historical epics (Gladiator and Kingdom of Heaven), military action films (Black Hawk Down), crime thrillers (American Gangster) and straight dramas (Thelma & Louise), he got his start in science fiction with Alien and Blade Runner. Scott isn’t the only director to begin a successful career in science fiction. Here are seven other directors who started out or received some of their earliest success in this genre.

read more...

Perfectionist. Demanding. Hard to work with. David Fincher is a man who hates his own brand but is secure in his own reputation. Of course, it’s a little bit easy when that reputation includes stunning movies and a mind that can operate at an auteur speed in the high-occupancy Hollywood studio lane. He’s a (mostly) accessibly genius, which is rare and which means that we as fans and filmmakers can learn a lot from him. Fortunately, he’s as free with his advice as he is with his nightmarish visions. Here’s a bit of free film school from a living legend.

read more...

Remember a time before 1995 when movies were loaded with rainbows and puppies? Strawberry ice cream poured out of every frame. Then Se7en came along. Then things got really interesting. David Fincher‘s second effort at feature filmmaking caught a storm, and it was one filled with melancholic grime and depressing endings. Also there was something about a box and what was in it. The state of thrillers changed forever, and, while many copycats tried to pick up the scraps Se7en left in its wake, none would recapture that initial sense of dread when John Doe screamed at Detective David Mills, the killers hands covered in blood. Paints a pretty picture, doesn’t it? Well, with this week’s Commentary Commentary, we’re hoping the track we’ve selected paints a couple of dozen more. David Fincher, Brad Pitt, and Morgan Freeman lend their voices and insight into this commentary track for Se7en. If for no other reason, this track should already be looked into for including Freeman, who has one of the greatest voices this side of a certain Sith. So, without any further ado, here are all 25 items we learned from listening to the Se7en commentary. Now to find out what’s in that box.

read more...

Culture Warrior

Veteran filmmaker Paul Schrader, notorious author Bret Easton Ellis, and indie producer Braxton Pope want you to audition for their new film. They’re assembling a microbudget feature for the digital distribution market called The Canyons, and they’re looking for some fresh new faces to star in it. Is your lack of an agent or non-Los Angeles residence preventing you from getting a fair chance at auditioning for legit films? There’s no need to worry, for we live in the 21st century my friend. The Canyons is holding its audition process through Facebook. On the one hand, The Canyons‘s unique production process makes complete sense. We are no longer, after all, in 2006 when studio producers had an overinvested, experimental Snakes on a Plane-level-interest in Internet culture. In this case, even on a small-budget independent film, the visible gatekeepers still possess power over the participants within the supposedly “democratized” framework of social networking. For a while it seemed that cinema – largely an object particular to 20th century logic – could not adapt to the boundary-destroying, power-shifting implications of the 21st century. Now this seems to no longer be the case. Web distribution (which was little more than a fantasy or an overblown threat to theatrical cinema’s hegemony just over a decade ago) is now seen as a conceivable and potentially profitable alternative to traditional film exhibition.

read more...

Javier Bardem in Skyfall

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news column that usually has more to say. But it’s a little hung over from SXSW and a little out of practice, as it took most of last week off. That said, it’s keepin’ it weird. We begin this evening with a first look at Javier Bardem as a Bond villain. He’s looking pretty skeevy. Also sinister, very sinister.

read more...

The Film: Fight Club (1999) The Plot: Our nameless Narrator (Edward Norton) works for a major auto manufacturer, investigating fatal crashes caused by product defects and running cost-benefit analyses to decide whether it’d be more expensive to recall the deadly cars or to pony up settlements in future class-action lawsuits. Sound like an amoral, soul-murdering job to you? Our Narrator agrees and embarks on a fumbling quest for peace. He gets a hearty shove down the path toward enlightenment when a) his apartment full of “versatile solutions for modern living” mysteriously explodes, b) he strikes up a love/hate relationship with the morbid nihilist Marla (Helena Bonham Carter), and c) he joins forces with soap entrepenuer and terrorist mastermind Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) to found the Fight Club movement.

read more...
  PREVIOUS PAGE
NEXT PAGE  
Twitter button
Facebook button
Google+ button
RSS feed

published: 12.23.2014
B+
published: 12.22.2014
C-
published: 12.19.2014
A-


Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Fantastic Fest 2014
6 Filmmaking Tips: James Gunn
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3