Niels Arden Oplev

Dead Man Down

Niels Arden Oplev and Noomi Rapace made a deadly combination in the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The director coldly orchestrated some horrifically emotional scenes, and Rapace became a mohawked icon of devastation and ennui. They’re back together with Dead Man Down, they want revenge, and we’ll get to see what they’ve wrought in March. Colin Farrell plays the right hand man of a crime boss (Terrence Howard) who is seduced by the wife of one his victims (Rapace). If this soaring trailer is any indication, things are going to get ugly.

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French actress Isabelle Huppert has been a force in the film world for quite a while now, winning Best Actress awards at Cannes for her work in Violette and The Piano Teacher, and a César for her role in La Cérémonie. Though she’s really only appeared in I Heart Huckabees and episodes of Law & Order: SVU in English-speaking roles (as far as I know?), she’s been a top international actress long enough that most everyone interested in acting and such Stateside should have an idea of who she is. Niels Arden Oplev hasn’t been around the scene for quite as long, but after he took the world by storm directing the Swedish version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, he solidified his place on the list of filmmakers that everyone is keeping their eyeballs on. His success launching that franchise has led to his latest project, Dead Man Down, signing mainstream names like Colin Farrell, Noomi Rapace, Terrence Howard, and Dominic Cooper to its cast. Though shooting on the film started last week in Philadelphia, apparently we’re not at the end of the good news when it comes to its cast.

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Though he won’t be exacting his revenge on any baddies in Motor City, Dominic Cooper appears to still be in the market to take down some double-crossing criminals in a new film. Variety reports that Cooper is currently in negotiations to take what sounds like a supporting role in Niels Arden Oplev‘s Dead Man Down. Both Colin Farrell and Noomi Rapace are on board the action-thriller (which, yes, will reunite Rapace with her The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo director), so the project certainly has some solid talent around it. The film follows Farrell’s character, who “infiltrates a crime syndicate capable for the death of his family.” Rapace is set to play “a mysterious, scarred beauty with intimate knowledge of his past.” The role Cooper would take sounds to be a bit less dramatic, that of “Darcy, a family man who works as Farrell’s partner on the street.” Hmm, a family man in a revenge thriller? Yeah, I think it’s a safe bet that Cooper’s precious family just might get caught up in some dirty, vengeful business.

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Zack Snyder has been involved with the upcoming, set in Afghanistan drama The Last Photograph from the very beginning. Since the project’s inception he has served as a co-writer and a producer. When you hear that Snyder is involved with a drama set in a war torn country, the concept instantly sends up some red flags. How would his flashy, comic-booky style fit with more real-world, dramatic subject matter than men in loin clothes eviscerating each other or girls in short skirts fighting giant robots? In the past this wasn’t too much of a concern, however, as Snyder was just in a producer’s role. The director’s job was going to go to someone else, and that someone else ended up being The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo helmer Niels Arden Oplev. He’s good, right? Yay, everyone cheers, and we all live happily ever after. Not so fast. Twitch is now reporting that Oplev has dropped out of the project for mysterious reasons, and seeing as he is already so engaged in it’s development, Snyder is going to step into the director’s role as an easy fit. The Last Photograph should fit perfectly into Snyder’s schedule, as he can slip right into shooting after he finishes work on the Superman reboot Man of Steel. That brings up some problems. Will Christian Bale’s reporter character be doing slow motion spin moves, snapping off photographs in mid air, while mortar shells explode around him? Will we get a scene of Sean Penn’s character […]

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The Last Photograph is a story about a war reporter in Afghanistan who is the only survivor of an attack on a group of Americans, and an ex-special ops soldier who is related to the victim of a kidnapping. The soldier has come to find and rescue his relation, and he convinces the reporter to help identify his attackers/the kidnappers in exchange for letting him tag along and report the story. Christian Bale is already set to play the reporter, and now Sean Penn is reportedly close to signing on to play the part of the soldier. I see this move as a risk. Everybody knows that Liam Neeson is the one who rakes in the big bucks when he’s hunting down kidnappers, not Sean Penn. The film is going to be directed by The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’s Niels Arden Oplev with the 300 gang of Zack Snyder, Deborah Snyder, and Gianni Nunnari producing. No funding for the picture is yet in place, but Dark Castle is reportedly close to inking a deal that would give them the task, with Warner Bros. handling the distributing end of things. With a couple of actors like Bale and Penn on board, this is a film that’s sure to get a lot of attention. And with a couple of actors like Bale and Penn on board, this is a film that’s sure to have a tense set. My best wishes go out to Niels Arden Oplev, who I think impeccably directed […]

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Christian Bale

For a fun thought experiment, think about the last great role you saw Christan Bale tackle not counting Public Enemies or any time he puts on a cape, cowl and growl for Christopher Nolan. While you’re doing that, imagine a world where he and Zack Snyder are teaming up for something completely original. It may be shocking that a new concept is coming out of Hollywood and even more surprising that it’s coming from a man who cut his teeth on remakes and comic adaptations, but according to Pajiba, it’s the God’s honest truth. Snyder will be producing The Last Photograph and Bale is set in stone to star.

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published: 04.17.2014
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published: 04.17.2014
D+
published: 04.17.2014
B-
published: 04.16.2014
B+

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