Gillian Flynn

Ben Affleck in GONE GIRL

You can have your Paul Thomas Andersons and Terrence Malicks, your Richard Linklaters and Friedberg/Seltzers. For my money the most consistently fantastic and exciting director working today is David Fincher. Even perceived “bottom tier” Fincher thrillers (Panic Room, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) are better than a large percentage of other suspense films out there, and it’s his work that I most look forward to every couple years. His latest is once again an adaptation of an immensely popular novel, but unlike Stieg Larsson’s Nordic thriller Gillian Flynn‘s book lacks a distinct visual style that plays so well into Fincher’s wheelhouse. The film, scripted by Flynn herself, is a mystery set in suburban America that follows a man’s (Ben Affleck) attempt to find his missing wife (Rosamund Pike) and convince the world that he’s not somehow responsible. Check out the first trailer for Gone Girl below.

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Ben Affleck in Gone Girl

If you’ve so far resisted reading even just one of author Gillian Flynn’s bestselling novels, now is probably the time to give in and give over to the twisted charms of any of Flynn’s three books and get sucked into her cleverly engineered worlds, especially since you’re about to be inundated with all sorts of material from the David Fincher-directed take on her most recent novel, “Gone Girl.” Fincher’s version of Gone Girl features an interesting and varied cast of talents (which is a nice way of saying that I’m not entirely sold on a few of his picks), including Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Missi Pyle, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, Casey Wilson, Patrick Fugit, Scoot McNairy, and Carrie Coon, and it attempts to translate Flynn’s complicated story of a young wife (Pike) who goes missing and what that means for her embattled husband (Affleck). As is the case with all of Flynn’s works, it’s difficult to truly explain what the film is about without giving a whole mess of stuff away. It’s best to spout off a common-sounding storyline, and pair it up with the assurance that it’s only a tiny bit of a big, dark, winding, insane iceberg. Basically, Gone Girl sounds like a TV movie – and it’s not. This is pure Fincher territory. The new film also boasts a script from Flynn herself – one that the author has apparently already sliced and diced up into something new, making her old third act disappear right along […]

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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.

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Gillian Flynn

Bestselling author Gillian Flynn is a unique position – while she’s only penned three novels in her relatively short career (and, man, are all three of those novels damn good), all three of her books are currently in active movie development. Flynn could knock off her novel-writing career now and still be way ahead the curb, but let’s hope she doesn’t. If there’s anything both books and movies need right now, it’s truly thrilling works that rest on the shoulders of extremely complicated leading ladies. The three upcoming Flynn adaptations – Dark Places, Sharp Objects, and Gone Girl – are all coming to us from very different talent teams and studios, but there are plenty of common threads between each novel to make them just a wee bit confusing to readers and watchers (I’ve often gone searching for the Flynn book “Dark Objects” on the Internet, obviously to no avail). So what’s the difference between Gone Girl and Dark Places and Sharp Objects? We’ll tell you.

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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.

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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.

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That did not take long. Author Gillian Flynn‘s third novel, “Gone Girl,” only hit shelves on June 5, but it’s already the talk of the publishing world and a bonafide must-read that’s poised to be the breakout novel of the summer (it’s also at the top of the New York Times Bestseller list). Flynn’s no stranger to signing deals to adapt her clever and dark novels (her “Sharp Objects” was optioned by Alliance and Amy Adams is set to star in a film version of “Dark Places”), but even she must be reeling at the news out of Comic-Con that “Gone Girl” has been snapped up by 20th Century Fox for a cool seven figures. Deadline Del Mar reports that Reese Witherspoon, Bruna Papandrea, and Leslie Dixon will produce the film, with a script coming from Flynn herself. The book was reportedly a hot auction, with other studios like Universal hoping to snap up the rights. The outlet also speculates that the recent “Fifty Shades Of Grey action has elevated interest in bestsellers geared to female readers.” While the book certainly involves women (it centers on a woman who goes missing), it’s by no means some sort of “Fifty Shades” knock-off, as Flynn specializes in wicked suspense thrillers that appeal to a wide variety of readers.

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Three-time Oscar nominee Amy Adams has taken on some varied roles over the course of her career and, despite some forays into darker material (Doubt, The Fighter, and most likely the upcoming The Master), Adams has always provided a ray of sunlight into her works (even really gritty sunlight, like in The Fighter). However, her next project will plunge Adams into a blackness we’ve yet to see from her – and I can’t wait for it. Variety reports that Adams is currently in negotiations to star in Gilles Paquet-Brenner‘s Dark Places, an adaptation of Gillian Flynn‘s novel of the same name. Adams would play Libby Day, a hardened character who witnessed the murder of most of her family when she was just seven. It was Libby’s testimony that put her fifteen-year-old brother behind bars for the crimes, but that’s given her little solace twenty-five years later. Nearly broke and an outcast from the rest of the world, Libby is approached by “the Kill Club,” a secret society who are bent on freeing Ben. And, well, that’s not a good thing for Libby.

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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.16.2014
B+

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