Michael Fassbender

foxxwarbucks

What is Casting Couch? A new day, a new set of casting updates. And—you guys—you’re going to want to pay attention to this one. We’ve got Michael Fassbender news. One of the most memorable characters from the ‘Little Orphan Annie’ comic strips was Annie’s father figure, benefactor, and get out of jail free card, Daddy Warbucks. Warbucks was a man of means, said to be worth upwards of “ten zillion dollars,” but he was a self-made man who always preached the importance of working hard and putting back into the free market. If an actor were going to adequately portray Warbucks in a film adaptation of the Annie story, he would necessarily have to bring all kinds of swagger. That’s probably why Will Gluck is looking at Jamie Foxx to play a version of the character in his upcoming take on the Annie property. THR is reporting that Foxx is currently in negotiations to join Quvenzhane Wallis in the film as Benjamin Stacks, an even more absurdly named update on the Warbucks concept. This one’s definitely got Jay-Z’s fingerprints all over it.

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news 12 years a slave

It’s no secret that Michael Fassbender has become one of the most respected, sought-after new faces to hit Hollywood in the last ten years. The guy went from supporting face to leading man in record time, and is now looked at as being the sort of talent who will raise your movie to a whole other level if you manage to land him. If you’ve been following his career so far, then you know that a big reason for his success is the work he’s done with director Steve McQueen on his features Hunger and Shame. McQueen, a visual artist turned film director, has a unique style and a patient camera that’s well-suited to showing off an actor’s performance, and it was largely the work Fassbender did in his films that opened up eyes all over the industry to what he was capable of if given a meaty role. While Hunger was mostly the Michael Fassbender show, Shame added Carey Mulligan to the mix, and gave her a platform to remind us how talented she is as well. If McQueen has proven anything with his first two features, and unquestionably he’s proven a lot, it’s that he works well with actors. He gets what makes them special, and he gets how to shine a spotlight on that specialness. The point of all this is that his third film, Twelve Years a Slave, should be pretty damned spectacular.

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Bill Murray

What is Casting Couch? It’s the surveyor of all that is casting. Today we’ve got joyous news about more incredible actors joining Animal Rescue and sad news about Emma Watson dropping out of some promising projects. Get ready, it’s going to be an emotional roller coaster.

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Maggie Gyllenhaal

What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting news roundup that’s been out of work since casting agents seem to be treating the week between Christmas and New Years as one prolonged food coma. If there’s one thing that Jurassic Park taught us, it’s that nature finds a way. Well, casting finds a way too. In a week where there isn’t any news getting leaked to the trades, leave it to Albuquerque Business First to break a new scoop. The eagle eyes over at The Film Stage noticed that, in an article about how that Michael Fassbender-starring rock and roll comedy called Frank is coming to town to shoot, the local source managed to break the news that Maggie Gyllenhaal is coming to town with it. Her involvement in the film sees her joining a cast that includes not just Fassbender, but two of the young MVPs of 2012, Domhnall Gleeson and Scoot McNairy, as well. Which, you know, makes her one of the luckiest ladies in the world.

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Michael Shannon

What is Casting Couch? It’s the roundup of casting news that knows what Gillian Jacobs is going to be doing with her upcoming break from Community. All that time in the bushes finally paid off. Most people probably thought Wild Things director John McNaughton’s career hit its zenith when he directed Wild Things. That movie was basically the most ’90s thing ever, and it practically introduced the concept of the three-way to the square community through the communicative power of Denise Richards’ boobs. He may yet top that work though, because Deadline reports that he’s just recruited the best actor in the world, Michael Shannon, to star in his upcoming thriller The Harvest. The film will star Samantha Morton as a successful heart surgeon and Shannon as her co-dependent husband. Its conflict comes in when their sick son meets a new friend, and suddenly the very controlled routine that Morton’s character has created starts to break down. Sounds like a creepy mom.

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What is Casting Couch? Despite the fact that the movie business seems to be slow to get back to work after the long weekend, it’s a column that’s managed to dig up a couple exciting casting coups. Bryan Singer out-scooped everybody in the news breaking business today when he suddenly started tweeting big updates on how the cast for his upcoming X-Men: First Class sequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past, was developing. He started off small by first confirming that a few members of the First Class crew would be returning. He tweeted, “I’d like to officially welcome back James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, & Nicholas Hoult to #XMEN for #DaysOfFuturePast.” But then he got a little crazy and started confirming rumors that actors from his original X-Men movies will be joining the film as well by tweeting, “Thrilled to announce @ianmckellen118 (Ian McKellan) & @SirPatStew (Patrick Stewart) are joining the cast of #XMEN #DaysOfFuturePast #magneto #professorX More to come…” Do you think we could get scenes where old Professor X and Magneto meet young Professor X and Magneto? The head spins with awesome possibilities.

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Whether you loved Prometheus or hated it with every fiber of your being, you can’t deny the fact that it was at least successful in continuing a cinematic conversation about it long after it debuted in theaters. After the film’s Blu-ray release in October, the original script was leaked online, sparking a slew of articles to be written about the differences between it and the final film. (For a look at FSR’s take on that, check out J.F. Sargent’s The 8 Worst Parts of Prometheus Made Sense In the Original Script.) This week, coinciding with the leaking of that script, we’re going straight to the horse’s mouths about the writing of Prometheus. As interesting as Ridley Scott is, let’s lend an ear to the writers of the film as they discuss the differences in the many drafts of the film. If you haven’t seen the film yet, be warned: there are many spoilers in the discussion below. And on to the commentary…

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Isla Fisher

What is Casting Couch? Today it’s a casting column that’s relying on the dreaded “short list” for content. You can’t really say that The Switch is a Jackie Brown prequel. Its story doesn’t really connect with the goings-on of Jackie Brown in any way, and Quentin Tarantino isn’t involved or anything. But it is an adaptation of an Elmore Leonard novel that features many of the same characters Jackie Brown did. Case in point: Variety reports that fiery redhead Isla Fisher is in negotiations to play Melanie, the same stoner surfer girl that Bridget Fonda played in Tarantino’s film. The Switch also features Mos Def and John Hawkes in the roles Samuel L. Jackson and Robert De Niro originally played, and Jennifer Aniston as a kidnapped housewife. Fisher’s character is said to be the manipulator of the story, and isn’t that always the case with these pretty girls?

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Michael Fassbender

What is Casting Couch? It’s where you go to make sure Elijah Wood is adding another new job to his calendar every day. Turns out, today he kept the streak alive, read on… Colin Firth and Michael Fassbender are two of the best actors on the planet Earth; objectively, inarguably. What a coup, then, that director Michael Grandage has landed both of them for his upcoming project, Genius. Based on a book by A. Scott Berg, Genius is a biopic that explores the relationship between Thomas Wolfe (Fassbender) and his editor Max Perkins (Firth). Turns out Wolfe and Perkins were great friends, but the kind who butted heads over everything. Sure, listening to two guys argue over word choice wouldn’t normally sound like a very exciting idea for a movie, but with these two actors on board it absolutely does. Add this one to your to-do list. [Variety]

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According to a press release from Ubisoft, the video game company has partnered with New Regency to develop their Assassin’s Creed movie. The project is moving forward quickly because of one reason: Michael Fassbender. The actor has moved fluidly between the mainstream world (X-Men: First Class), the indie world (A Dangerous Method) and the niche indie world (everything he’s done with Steve McQueen), but taking this role might be the first major opportunity for him to headline a big film without an ensemble at his side. Which is excellent. Fassbender is unarguably skilled, and it’s been amazing to see him bob and weave with success around a filmmaking landscape that’s difficult to navigate. There’s still a long way to go with this thing, but the game is popular, and the basic concept should translate easily to a movie that involves a lot of action and violence. It’s easy to see how Fassbender would be the right actor for the job.

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Some of you may already know me by my Twitter handle: @thefilmcynic. It’s a name I’ve gone by for nearly a decade (so, before current social media outlets), because I’m very cynical about the film industry and try to keep my expectations low. I’m also very cynical about the Academy Awards and awards season in general, because we devote so much focus on them — with a wide spectrum of positive and negative angles — and they’re really a bunch of malarkey (much like the V.P. debate, which has inspired my newfound obsession with that word). So, the higher ups at FSR have asked me to write a cynical column devoted to the Oscars. The first one is inspired by the films Seven Psychopaths, Looper and Lincoln and their celebrated performances. As someone who has studied acting (I’m not very good at it), I’ve long taken issue with the way people look at film performances, because there are just so many different kinds. But there are two real distinct types that we tend to recognize while watching and writing about movies that aren’t acknowledged by the Academy: realistic and artificial. The former has been a big favorite since method acting came into play, though it doesn’t necessarily apply to that style nor does that style necessarily always mean realism. The latter could be more expressive and therefore goes back to the dawn of cinema and its silent performances or could even be more stiff, if that’s what’s intended. Directors who […]

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Michael Fassbender

According to The Film Stage, Michael Fassbender has been spotted on set with Ryan Gosling for Terrence Malick‘s untitled movie about two love triangles colliding against the Austin music scene. It’s a small role, but he has just as good a chance as any to be cut from the final product. There’s a blurry photo of him if you’re interested. Malick has been on a tear lately, making movies at a rate 18 times faster than normal. To The Wonder is hanging out at film festivals, but he’s also got Voyages of Time and Knight of Cups headed for home plate even while he’s filming this new work which also includes Christian Bale, Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara. It’s unclear what’s prompted this increased productivity, but it’s hard to scoff when Fassbender’s involved. Even if his work might never see the light of day.

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Michael Fassbender

The upcoming year looks like it’s going to be a busy one for Michael Fassbender, which probably has something to do with the fact that he’s the greatest (and handsomest) actor currently residing on the planet. He just got done filming Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, he’s now working on the Ridley Scott directed and Cormac McCarthy written The Counselor, he’s been linked to Natalie Portman’s next project, Jane Got a Gun, and there’s always his reprisal of the classic X-Men villain Magneto looming in the future, for the X-Men: First Class sequel Days of Future Past. When you’re a complete stud and acting machine like Fassbender, however, you don’t let something silly like a full schedule stop you from piling more on, so it should come as no surprise that Variety is reporting the übermensch has added another project onto his plate. The latest is an Irish indie called Frank. Coming from a script by Jon Ronson and Peter Straughan, and to be directed by Lenny Abrahamson (whose latest, What Richard Did, is about to debut at TIFF), Frank is the story of an aspiring and naive young musician who gets in over his head after he joins a band led by an eccentric front man. And it turns out Fassbender can carry a tune:

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Why Watch? In partnership with the Venice Film Festival, YouTube’s Your Film Festival sought to find the best storytellers in the world and give them a platform on the video-sharing site. Yesterday, after thousands of entries and a Ridley Scott-narrowed group of 50 semi-finalists, a winner was announced. David Victori will win $500,000 to go toward crafting original online content with Scott and Michael Fassbender. His short, The Guilt (La Culpa), is an ice-blooded revenge film with absolutely arresting camerawork. It uses tricky visuals to deliver a psychologically consumed protagonist and a purgatorial subtext that’s never too heavy-handed. In short, he’s one to watch, and he has the last name to prove it. What will it cost you? Only 12 minutes. Skip work. Watch more short films.

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Jane Got a Gun has been an attractive package from the very beginning, seeing as it pairs a Black List script with a talented director in Lynne Ramsay (We Need to Talk About Kevin) and a huge movie star lead in Natalie Portman (Mars Attacks). But now, as the production inches closer to a start date, it’s going to have to start filling out the rest of its cast, and a report from Vulture says that Ramsay and crew are looking to get that process started off with a bang. The story of the film is said to follow a woman (Portman) whose husband comes home one day riddled with bullet wounds and barely breathing. It turns out that her low-down dog of a hubby has gone and got himself involved with some criminal Confederates, and now they’re hot on his heels and looking to finish the job they already started. Seeing as said man is seemingly on his death bed, it falls on said woman to reach out to an ex-lover and ask him to help her defend her farm, a proposition that sounds ripe with dramatic stickiness.

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One of the biggest complaints people had coming out of Ridley Scott’s epic in scope sci-fi spectacle Prometheus was that it raised more questions than it answered. Well, today brings good news for those of you looking for closure. It turns out Scott knew what he was doing all along: he raised a bunch of questions about the origins of humanity, got us on the hook for wanting answers, and now he’s going to sell us all tickets to a sequel. Pretty clever, movie industry. Confirmation of a Prometheus 2 comes from THR, who have published a comprehensive look at which of the big movies from this summer are likely to spawn sequels. In addition to the Prometheus confirmation, they reveal that movies like Ted, Magic Mike, American Reunion, and Snow White and the Huntsman are all likely to be given follow-ups as well.

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With his roles in X-Men: First Class and Prometheus, we’ve already seen Michael Fassbender elevate genre works that have problems at their core to something greater than they would have been without his magnetic presence. And with his starring roles in Steve McQueen’s Hunger and Shame, we’ve seen the soaring heights that a movie can reach when they focus on the actor as their main subject. But does Fassbender have what it takes to step into the murky waters of video game movies and come out the other side without any stink on him? According to a report from Variety, we’re soon going to find out. There have been some video game movies that aren’t that bad in the past. The Resident Evil series certainly has its fans, and voices have sung the praises of Silent Hill here and there, but we’ve yet to see a movie based on a video game break out of the video game movie ghetto and be widely considered a great film overall. Ubisoft is hoping they can change that. We reported last year that they had interest in turning their “Assassin’s Creed” and “Rainbow Six” video game franchises into feature films, and it’s looking like that wasn’t lip service. Their efforts are starting to bear fruit.

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We’ve done so much drooling over Twelve Years a Slave that you should have a pretty good idea what it is by now. It’s the next film from visual artist extraordinaire, Steve McQueen, and his third in a row that sees him collaborating with the most exciting actor on the planet today, Michael Fassbender. It goes without saying that any chance we get to watch this actor/director duo work together again is reason enough to celebrate, but what’s been so exciting about watching this project develop is that, unlike Hunger and Shame, Twelve Years a Slave doesn’t seem like it’s going to be the Michael Fassbender show. No, this true story of the life of free man turned slave Solomon Northrup seems like it’s going to give McQueen the chance to spread the love around and direct a real ensemble. The cast is deep and impressive enough at this point that our own Kate Erbland has declared it to be the best of the year, so instead of getting too much into the who’s and what’s of things let’s just do a quick rundown. Joining lead actor Chiwetel Ejiofor will be the aforementioned Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson, Scoot McNairy, Ruth Negga, Garret Dillahunt, and Adepero Oduye. That’s an impressive list to say the least. And, seeing as the film has already started production, it wouldn’t seem like there’s much room left for anyone else to be added. Still, somehow McQueen has managed to […]

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While the rest of the movie-going universe debates the merits of Prometheus, Ridley Scott is busy putting the final touches on the Cormac McCarthy-scribed thriller The Counselor. The film stars Brad Pitt as a lawyer who gets involved with drug trafficking, and already sported the promising supporting cast of Michael the-best-thing-about-Prometheus Fassbender and McCarthy veteran Javier Bardem. According to Deadline Bloomington, another McCarthy veteran (remember All the Pretty Horses?), Penélope Cruz, has officially been added to the cast after being rumored for a role for some time. No word on what character she’ll play, but despite any reservations audiences have had about Scott’s latest star-studded genre outing, this cast in the first script penned by really-freaking-good novelist Cormac McCarthy seems promising. Deadline notes that the film has been described as [sigh…] “No Country For Old Men on steroids,” which promises exactly the opposite of everything that made that Best Picture winner interesting. Principal photography for The Counselor begins this summer.

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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.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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