No promises we’ll have a Friday news dump this week, so you’d better enjoy this edition…
* Well, the big news tonight is most definitely the reorganization going over at the Warner Brothers megastudio. As far as I’m able to suss out, what this amounts to is a consolidation of power for CEO Jeff Bewkes. Reading Nikki Finke‘s current summary of the situation is a bit like reading a Television Without Pity post for a very complicated soap opera you’ve never seen, but Anne Thompson keeps it much, much simpler. On his way out exec Alan Horn is a good guy who Thompson believes was simply superfluous. Another case of a nice guy finishing last?
However, Nikki Finke does allude to a very crucial part of the Warners empire, and that’s DC Comics now being headed by the Warners minded and Finke approved Diane Nelson. As it happens, my deep, deep connections in the comics biz were e-mailing me news earlier today — which I was somewhat aware of but failed to properly cover earlier in the week — of an onging reorganization going on over there which certainly ties into the ongoing attempts at Warners to become more aggressive regarding comics adaptations along the lines of what Marvel Entertainment has been doing for some time — and also to try and avoid more flops like “Jonah Hex.”
There was even talk some talk of DC becoming entirely a West Coast operation, but that would be a major breach of publishing industry tradition with some actual problems involved and, in any case, thanks to FedEx and the ‘net, freelancers can live where they want now. Heidi MacDonald’s great comics blog The Beat has been covering this end of the story and you read about some of what’s going on here.
No time for my usual prolixity tonight, but here is the new international trailer for “Buried” an apparent two-man show from director Rodrigo Cortés and star Ryan Reynolds, which presents us with a cinematic challenge in screen suspense that might have made even Alfred Hitchcock in his “Rope,” “Rear Window” and “Lifeboat” mode think twice. You may compare and contrast with the earlier trailer here.
When I was in UCLA’s film school, sometime in the antediluvian celluloid era, the most grueling and rewarding class was “Project 1” in which all students were forced to become the auteurs of their own Super-8 epic. Just to make things a little extra tough, we were also forced to use 16mm sound in combination with the 8mm picture, which, trust me, created nightmarish problems regarding syncing sound to picture that essentially turned post-production into a cinematic hazing ritual. As we students expressed our frustration, inevitably someone would come up with same silly/sick joke about doing a film “from the point of view of Helen Keller” — i.e., complete silence and no visuals — or, a bit less minimalistically, “from the point of view of Stevie Wonder.”
Well, eventually, one of my friends did make a film that was close to the latter, with some clever dialogue which I won’t try to reconstruct here. Ever since then, I don’t remember anyone trying to make anything quite so minimal, that is until now….
This comes via Pete Sciretta at /Film who really seems to think that this film, which takes place entirely in the coffin and is most definitely not for the seriously claustrophobic, is terrific. Now, I’m definitely a fan of moves that take place in relatively confined spaces. “Rear Window” is one of my all-time favorite films, but I imagine there have to be limits. However, if I actually enjoy watching “Buried,” rather than merely enduring it, that will be an achievement that will force me to take director writer Chris Sparling, director Rodrigo Cortés and star Ryan Reynolds very seriously.