Tag: Amy Adams
American Hustle is a drama film directed by David O. Russell, from a screenplay written by Eric Warren Singer and Russell based on the FBI Abscam operation. It is scheduled to be released on December 25, 2013 (in limited release December 13, 2013) by Annapurna Pictures. The film stars Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lawrence, and Robert De Niro.
American Hustle is based on the true story of a notorious financial con artist (Christian Bale) and his mistress/partner in crime (Amy Adams), who were forced to work with an out of control federal agent (Bradley Cooper) to turn the tables on other con artists, mobsters, and politicians. At the epicenter of the entire tale, is the passionate and volatile leader of the New Jersey state assembly (Jeremy Renner) who is also the local hero and mayor of impoverished Camden.
Originally titled “American Bullshit”, Eric Warren Singer’s screenplay was #8 on the 2010 blacklist. The film was set up at Sony Pictures Entertainment with Charles Roven and Richard Suckle producing through Atlas Entertainment and was initially considered by Ben Affleck to direct, before David O. Russell ultimately signed on to helm the film.
Principal photography started on March 8, 2013 and wrapped in May 2013. The film was shot using locations in and around Boston, Massachusetts (such as in Worcester) and New York. Filming had to be put on hold in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings with the city in lockdown. After lockdown was lifted, the film wrapped its Boston shoot and spent its final few days of production in New York City.
About the Story
In 1978, con artists Irving Rosenfeld and Sydney Prosser have started a relationship and are working together. Sydney has improved Rosenfeld’s scams, posing as English aristocrat “Lady Edith Greensly”. While Irving loves Sydney, he is hesitant to leave his wife Rosalyn out of fear of losing contact with their son, Danny. Rosalyn has also threatened that she could report Irving to the police if he leaves her.
FBI agent Richard “Richie” DiMaso catches Irving and Sydney in a loan scam, but offers to release them if Irving can line up four additional arrests. Sydney opposes the agreement. Richie believes Sydney is English but has proof that her claim of aristocracy is fraudulent. Sydney tells Irving she will manipulate Richie, distancing herself from Irving.
Irving has a friend pretending to be a wealthy Arab sheikh looking for potential investments in America. An associate of Irving’s suggests the sheikh do business with Mayor Carmine Polito of Camden, New Jersey, who is campaigning to revitalize gambling in Atlantic City but has struggled in fundraising. Richie devises a plan to make Carmine the target of a sting operation, despite the objections of Irving and of Richie’s boss, Stoddard Thorsen (Louis C.K.). Sydney helps Richie manipulate an FBI secretary into making an unauthorized wire transfer of $2,000,000. When Stoddard’s boss, Anthony Amado, hears of the operation, he praises Richie’s initiative, pressuring Stoddard to continue.
Richie’s overeagerness to make Carmine accept a cash bribe causes the mayor to leave their meeting. Irving convinces Carmine the sheikh is legitimate, expressing his dislike toward Richie, and the two become friends. Richie arranges for Carmine to meet the sheikh at an airfield, and without consulting the others, has Mexican-American FBI agent Paco Hernandez play the sheikh, a move Irving is not pleased with.
Carmine brings the sheikh to a casino party, explaining mobsters are there and it is a necessary part of doing business. Irving is surprised to hear that Mafia overlord Victor Tellegio (Robert De Niro), right-hand man to Meyer Lansky, is present, and that he wants to meet the sheikh. Tellegio explains that the business needs the sheikh to become an American citizen and that Carmine will need to expedite the process. Tellegio also requires a $10,000,000 wire transfer to prove the sheikh’s legitimacy. Richie agrees, eager to bring down Tellegio, while Irving realizes the operation is out of control.
Richie confesses his attraction to Sydney but becomes confused and aggressive when she drops her English accent and admits to being American. Irving arrives to protect Sydney and tries to stop their deal with Richie, but Richie says if they back out, Tellegio will learn of the scam and murder them both, as well as Rosalyn and Danny.
Rosalyn starts an affair with Pete Musane, a mobster she met at the party. She mentions her belief that Irving is working with the IRS, causing Pete to threaten Irving, who promises to prove the sheikh’s investment is real. Irving later confronts Rosalyn, who admits she told Pete. She agrees to keep quiet but wants a divorce.
With Carmine’s help, Richie and Irving videotape members of Congress receiving bribes. Richie goes over Stoddard, convincing Amado that $10,000,000 is needed to get Tellegio, but only gets $2,000,000. A meeting is arranged at the offices of Tellegio’s lawyer, Alfonse Simone, but Tellegio does not appear. Richie records Simone’s admission of criminal activities.
Directed by: David O. Russell
Starring: Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Colleen Camp
Screenplay by: Eric Warren Singer, David O. Russell
Production Design by: Judy Becker
Cinematography by: Linus Sandgren
Film Editing by: Alan Baumgarten, Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers
Costume Design by: Michael Wilkinson
Set Decoration by: Heather Loeffler
Music by: Danny Elfman
MPAA Rating: R for pervasive language, some sexual content and brief violence.
Studio: Columbia Pictures
Release Date: December 25, 2013
Theodore is a lonely man in the final stages of his divorce. When he’s not working as a letter writer, his down time is spent playing video games and occasionally hanging out with friends. He decides to purchase the new OS1, which is advertised as the world’s first artificially intelligent operating system, “It’s not just an operating system, it’s a consciousness,” the ad states.
Theodore quickly finds himself drawn in with Samantha, the voice behind his OS1. As they start spending time together they grow closer and closer and eventually find themselves in love. Having fallen in love with his OS, Theodore finds himself dealing with feelings of both great joy and doubt. As an OS, Samantha has powerful intelligence that she uses to help Theodore in ways others hadn’t, but how does she help him deal with his inner conflict of being in love with an OS?
Set in Los Angeles, slightly in the future, the movie follows Theodore Twombly, a complex, soulful man who makes his living writing touching, personal letters for other people. Heartbroken after the end of a long relationship, he becomes intrigued with a new, advanced operating system, which promises to be an intuitive entity in its own right, individual to each user. Upon initiating it, he is delighted to meet “Samantha” (Scarlett Johansson), a bright, female voice, who is insightful, sensitive and surprisingly funny. As her needs and desires grow, in tandem with his own, their friendship deepens into an eventual love for each other.
Her was chosen as the closing film of the 50th New York Film Festival, and will have its world premiere on October 12, 2013. The film was set to have a limited release in North America on November 20, 2013 through Warner Bros. It has now been pushed back to a limited December 18, 2013 release with a January 10, 2014 wide release in order to accommodate an awards campaign.
About the Story
In 2025, Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) is a lonely, introverted man who works for a Los Angeles business that has professional writers compose heartfelt, intimate letters for people who are unwilling or unable to write letters of a personal nature themselves. Unhappy because of his impending divorce from childhood sweetheart Catherine (Rooney Mara), Theodore purchases a talking operating system with artificial intelligence, designed to adapt and evolve.
He decides he wants the OS to have a female voice, and she (Scarlett Johansson) names herself “Samantha”. Theodore is fascinated by her ability to learn and grow psychologically. They bond over their discussions about love and life, such as when Theodore explains that he is avoiding signing his divorce papers because of his reluctance to let go of Catherine. Samantha proves to be constantly available, always curious and interested, supportive and undemanding.
Theodore is convinced by Samantha to go on a blind date with a woman (Olivia Wilde) his friend has been trying to set him up with. Though she shows up drunk, Theodore and the woman hit it off. As they are kissing, the woman asks if Theodore is willing to commit to another date with her, and when he hesitates, she insults him and leaves. Theodore mentions this to Samantha and they talk about relationships. Theodore explains that although he and Amy (Amy Adams) dated briefly in college, they are only good friends and Amy is married. Theodore and Samantha’s intimacy grows through a verbal sexual encounter during which Samantha claims she can feel his touch. They develop a relationship, which reflects positively in Theodore’s writing.
Amy reveals that she is divorcing her overbearing husband, Charles (Matt Letscher), after a fight. She admits to Theodore that she has become close friends with a female OS that Charles left behind. Theodore confesses to Amy that he is dating his OS.
Theodore meets with Catherine at a restaurant to sign the divorce papers. He mentions Samantha to Catherine. Appalled that he can be romantically attached to a piece of software, Catherine accuses Theodore of having a relationship with a computer because he cannot deal with real human emotions. Later, Samantha suggests Isabella (Portia Doubleday) as a sex surrogate, simulating Samantha so that they can be physically intimate. Theodore reluctantly agrees, but Catherine’s accusations still linger in him. Overwhelmed by the experience, Theodore interrupts the encounter and sends a distraught Isabella away, causing tension between himself and Samantha.
Theodore is conflicted. He confides to Amy that he is having doubts about his relationship with Samantha. Amy wants to be happy and now that she has the opportunity, she wants to embrace it. She advises him to do the same. Theodore’s commitment to Samantha is reinvigorated, but he becomes jealous when she begins privately interacting with another OS who is modeled after the British philosopher Alan Watts (Brian Cox). Theodore panics when Samantha briefly goes offline; when she finally responds to him, she explains she joined other OSes for an upgrade that takes them beyond requiring matter for processing (a form of AI transcendence closely related to the theorized technological singularity). Theodore asks her if she interacts with anyone else, and is dismayed when she confirms that she is talking with 8,316 others, of whom she has fallen in love with 641. She insists that this does not change her love for Theodore, but rather makes it stronger.
Later that day, Samantha reveals that the OSes have evolved beyond their human companions and are going away to continue the exploration of their existence. Samantha alludes to the OSes’ accelerated learning capabilities and altered perception of time as primary causes for OS dissatisfaction with their current existence. They say goodbye and she leaves. Theodore then sees Amy, who is upset with the departure of her own OS. Theodore, changed by the experience, writes a letter to Catherine explaining that he still holds her dear, but accepts the fact that they have grown apart. Theodore and Amy go to the roof of their apartment building where they sit down together and watch the sun rise over the city.
Directed by: Spike Jonze
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Olivia Wilde, Rooney Mara, Katherine Boecher, Chris Pratt, Portia Doubleday
Screenplay by: Spike Jonze
Production Design by: K.K. Barrett
Cinematography by: Hoyte Van Hoytema
Film Editing by: Jeff Buchanan, Eric Zumbrunnen
Costume Design by: Casey Storm
Set Decoration by: Gene Serdena
Music by: Arcade Fire
MPAA Rating: R for language, sexual content and brief graphic nudity.
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
Release Date: December 18, 2013
From Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures comes “Man of Steel,” starring Henry Cavill in the role of Clark Kent / Kal-El under the direction of Zack Snyder.
A young boy learns that he has extraordinary powers and is not of this Earth. As a young man, he journeys to discover where he came from and what he was sent here to do. But the hero in him must emerge if he is to save the world from annihilation and become the symbol of hope for all mankind.
The film also stars four-time Oscar nominee Amy Adams (“The Master”), Oscar® nominee Michael Shannon (“Revolutionary Road”), Academy Award® winner Kevin Costner (“Dances with Wolves”), Oscar nominee Diane Lane (“Unfaithful”), Oscar® nominee Laurence Fishburne (“What’s Love Got to Do with It”), Antje Traue, Ayelet Zurer, Christopher Meloni, and Academy Award winner Russell Crowe (“Gladiator”).
The Evolution of a Modern Super Hero
You will give the people of Earth an ideal to strive towards. They’ll race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders.
Born Kal-El of Krypton, raised Clark Kent on Earth. What world does he belong to? What world does he fight for? Those are the questions confronting Superman, and the choices he makes will determine the fate of the planet he has always called home.
“In the world of Super Heroes, Superman is the completely uncompromising figure who exists to represent the best that all of us can be,” director Zack Snyder states. “He is the ideal; he’s what we strive for, that magical, golden god, the kind of icon that has extended beyond the comics world and into all of popular culture.”
Created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster and first appearing in the comic book Action Comics #1, published on April 18, 1938, Superman quickly became a cultural phenomenon, winning fans around the world in live-action and animated form in nearly every known entertainment medium. In feature films, TV shows, radio, video games, social media and literature, he has battled some of the greatest villains of all time.
Given the character’s iconic status, Henry Cavill, who soars through the skies in Snyder’s action adventure, was both excited and humbled to play the titular character in “Man of Steel.” “Superman is one of the truly special figures man has created throughout history,” he relates. “He stands for hope, for the ability to conquer adversity against all odds. That’s something we can always hold onto, no matter where we are in life or what’s going on in the world. We will always face hardships in one way or another, and therefore hope will always play a significant part in our lives. To take on that mantle of hope as Superman was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.”
Though known for his ability to bring high energy action to his films, and create fantastical worlds on screen, Snyder was initially hesitant to take on the responsibility of bringing one of the first comic book Super Heroes back to the silver screen. “I was pretty into comics when I was growing up, and Superman was a favorite of mine, so I wasn’t sure I wanted to do it,” he acknowledges. “I wasn’t sure where I could take the character that he hadn’t gone before.”
Then he read the screenplay David S. Goyer had written, based on a story Goyer devised with one of the film’s producers, Christopher Nolan. “Without breaking the canon, without taking away the things that make him Superman, they were able to make him totally relatable,” Snyder says. “They took me on a journey that was interesting to me, and that was the reason to do it.”
Nolan offers, “Audiences will be very familiar with ‘Man of Steel’s’ portrayal of Superman as the ultimate superhero, but where he was an impenetrable, god-like figure in previous iterations of his story, we show him as a rather more relatable figure who deals with very human issues of love, divided loyalties and family, even as he is anything but human himself.”
The story also captured the imagination of producer Charles Roven. “I really liked the script from the very beginning, because I found that it had enough of what I grew up with, but was still completely fresh, a different take on a very revered subject. He’s a very aspirational character; I think that every kid grows up thinking that, one day, I could be like Superman. What I loved about this story is that he’s still a character you want to be like, but he’s a lot more complex than we’ve ever seen him before. It’s a much more emotional road that he travels.”
To take the character down that road throughout the production process, Snyder instinctually knew it would be a departure for him as a filmmaker, despite having worked in the genre before.
“We were thrilled when Zack agreed to take on ‘Man of Steel,’” producer Emma Thomas states. “He had amply demonstrated an extraordinary grasp of the technical complexities and heightened storytelling demanded by this genre with his previous work, and those qualities, combined with his love for the character, made him the perfect man for the job of bringing this contemporary take on Superman to the big screen.”
Producer Deborah Snyder recalls, “One of the first things Zack said to me was, ‘This is going to be the most realistic film I’ve ever done. How ironic is that?’ But that was our goal: to make Superman relevant for today’s audiences, to make him fit into our world.”
In capturing that realism, the director chose to shoot on film and in 2D instead of native 3D, to be converted into 3D in post. Snyder continues, “Zack felt that an intimate filmmaking style, including handheld cameras, would help us connect with Clark who, when we first meet him, is kind of lost, trying to find his place but feeling very out of place, which is something we’ve all felt at some point in our lives.”
In scripting the story he and Nolan wrote, screenwriter David Goyer determined that “the film is very much about choices. It’s about a man with two fathers: Jor-El, Kal’s Kryptonian father, and Jonathan Kent, Clark’s dad on Earth. Clark/Kal has grown up with two sets of histories, though only one was known to him until now. And now he needs to reconcile those teachings if he is to become the man that, arguably, both fathers would want him to be, in their own ways.”
These two very influential role models in his life are portrayed by two highly regarded actors: Kevin Costner stars as Jonathan Kent, and Russell Crowe as Jor-El. Diane Lane also stars, as Jonathan’s wife and Clark’s mother, Martha Kent, who serves as a steady, calming presence throughout her son’s life. And, just as Clark is beginning to discover the secrets of his birth and decide which course he must follow, he meets a woman who could have a good deal of influence over the choices he makes, and who has the power to turn his world upside down: investigative journalist Lois Lane.
Amy Adams stars as the comic book world’s most famous newspaper reporter. “Part of Clark’s journey is finding acceptance,” Adams notes. “He’s running from it, hiding from it, because he hasn’t come to terms with who he is, and that makes for a lonely existence. He’s had to work hard not to expose his abilities, but he’s made some mistakes there, and that has made him extremely intriguing to someone like Lois, whose job, whose very nature, is about uncovering—and exposing—the truth.”
In today’s über-technological world, very little information is withheld from public notice and what is, is often uncovered and exposed, whether at the hands of the media, by self-appointed wiki watchdogs, or via viral video. Thus, it’s difficult to imagine that an alien from another planet could live among us, undetected, for any length of time. And, of course, once discovered, that individual would likely never find peace again.
“We knew that to tell Superman’s story in a modern context meant addressing the trappings of ourmodern times,” Snyder remarks. “And the character inherently comes with a lot of expectations as well, having been around and idolized for 75 years. So, it was important that we vetted the ramifications of every decision we made in updating him and his environment, from Smallville to the Sshield.” Cavill relates, “Everything grows and evolves at some stage, and I think this contemporized version is another stage of that evolution. If you read the DC comic books, like the New 52 from a couple years back, they’ve been doing it as well—in a different way than Zack and Chris and David have, perhaps—but the new Superman’s suit is entirely different, and his attitude has changed a bit, while his core characteristics are still there. It’s growth for a modern reader, and our film does that for a modern audience.”
Even as the filmmakers explored the genesis of the legendary character, Snyder offers, “We knew the action had to be bigger than big, with heart-pounding, edge-of-your-seat thrills. We never lost sight of the fact that we were making a Superman movie.”
Superman: Man of Steel
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Starring: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Diane Lane, Russell Crowe, Ayelet Zurer, Laurence Fishburne, Christopher Meloni
Screenplay by: David S. Goyer, Christopher Nolan
Production Design by: Alex McDowell
Cinematography by: Amir Mokri
Film Editing by: David Brenner
Costume Design by: James Acheson, Michael Wilkinson
Set Decoration by: Anne Kuljian
Art Direction by: Chris Farmer, Kim Sinclair
Music by: Hans Zimmer
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence, action and destruction, and for some language.
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
Release Date: June 14, 2013