Gabriele Muccino is one of Italy’s few exports, and his mainstream US work is a toss up between the tearful Pursuit of Happyness and the equally-tearful-but-for-different-reasons Seven Pounds. One further cemented Will Smith as a serious acting talent, and the other one called it into question. We’ll see Muccino’s latest mainstream attempt when Playing For Keeps — starring Gerard Butler as a former soccer star trying to get his family life together – hits theaters on December 7th. It could be a chance at redemption for Butler’s character and for Muccino.
After that, he’s got a few Italian productions lined up, including the thriller Il Colpo (The Blow), he’ll be directing a segment for the anthology Shanghai, I Love You, and according to The Hollywood Reporter, he’s prepping a science fiction movie that he’d like Keanu Reeves to star in.
This is really interesting, considering that in 2010, he was set up with Reeves for the sci-fi Passengers, where Reeves would play an astronaut who wakes up way too early from hyper-sleep and wakes up a female astronaut so he doesn’t go crazy. However, screenwriter Jon Spaihts recently told us Muccino was out and a new director was in the hot seat. Could Muccino be back on board just a few months after that statement? It sounds likely. The other option, of course, is that Muccino has a different sci-fi project in mind and still wants to work with Reeves. Either way, it seems plausible that we’ll see a genre shift from the dramatic director soon.