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Brian De Palma
Karoline Herfurth
Leila Rozario


Warren Beatty's
Howard Hughes
moving forward

Filmmaker Mike
Cahill believes
he has world's
first double-
vertigo shot

Rie Rasmussen
to direct remake
of Cronenberg's

Mentor Tarantino
says she's the "perfect
choice" to direct

AV Club Review
of Dumas book

Spielberg Predicts
'Implosion' of
Film Industry

Scorsese tests
new Zaillian
script for
The Irishman
with De Niro,
Pacino, Pesci

James Franco
plans to direct
& star in
adaptation of Ellroy's
American Tabloid

Coppola on
his recent films:
"What I was
trying to do with
those films was to
make three student
films in order to
try and set a new
trajectory and try to
say, 'Well, what
happens if I have no
resources?' Now, having
done that, my new
work is going to be
much more ambitious
and bigger in scope and
budget and ambition,
but now building on a
new confidence or
assurance. The three
little films were very
useful. I'm glad I did
it. I hope George Lucas
does it, because he
has a wonderful personal
filmmaking ability that
people haven't seen
for a while."

Sean Penn to
direct De Niro
as raging comic
in The Comedian

Scarlett to make
directorial feature
debut with
Capote story

Keith Gordon
teaming up
with C. Nolan for
thriller that
he will write
and direct

Recent Headlines
a la Mod:

-Picture emerging
for Happy Valley

-De Palma's new
project with
Said Ben Said

-De Palma to team
with Pacino & Pressman
for Paterno film
Happy Valley

« May 2009 »
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De Palma interviewed
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De Palma discusses
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Carrie...A Fan's Site


Paul Schrader

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The Master Of Suspense

Alfred Hitchcock Films

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a la Mod

Mission To Mars
a la Mod

Sergio Leone
and the Infield
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The Filmmaker Who
Came In From The Cold

Jim Emerson on
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Scarface: Make Way
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The Big Dive
(Blow Out)

Carrie: The Movie

Deborah Shelton
Official Web Site

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Welcome to the
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So Why This Movie?

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No Time For
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De Palma a la Mod

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Sunday, May 10, 2009
Private Steven Green, who was the ringleader of the shocking 2006 attack on an Iraqi family that De Palma's film Redacted was based on, was found guilty on 16 charges by a Kentucky jury Thursday. According to an article in The Independent, the charges include rape, premeditated murder and obstruction of justice. The jury will reconvene on Monday to decide Green's penalty. Relatives of the murdered Iraqi family said they will only be satisfied if Green is given a death sentence that is then carried out, according to The Independent article by Kim Sengupta:

"So they decided this criminal was guilty, but we don't expect he'll be executed. Only if he's executed, will we know that the right thing was done," a cousin, Yusuf Mohammed Janabi, told Reuters. The dead schoolgirl's uncle, Karim Janabi, added: "By all measures, this was a very criminal act. We are just waiting for the court to sentence him so he gets justice and the court can change the image of Americans."

According to an AP article by Steve Robrahn, government prosecutors at Green's trial stated that Green had "bragged during a barbecue celebration later that what he had done [to the Iraqi family] was 'awesome.,'" and that Green was only interested in killing Iraqis "nonstop." According to Robrahn's article:

In opening statements at the trial, Patrick Bouldin, a public defender, said Green's platoon had been decimated by deaths and injuries before the crime.

"You have to understand the background that leads up to this perfect storm of insanity," Bouldin told the jury.

Bouldin said Green had sought help dealing with combat stress after the deaths of close colleagues and was unsure whether Iraqis he encountered were friend or foe.

"They couldn't tell the village people and the farmers from the insurgents and the terrorists," he said.

Posted by Geoff at 10:15 PM CDT
Updated: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 11:49 AM CDT
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Thursday, May 7, 2009

If Rebecca Romijn ever wanted to paint herself blue again for a few months (something she has said she is through with), there are some out there who think that Brian De Palma would be the perfect choice to direct the actress as Mystique in an X-Men spin-off movie. Of course, after Femme Fatale, who wouldn't want to see these two pair up again. A couple of months ago, Christopher Campbell posted a list of "10 Supporting Characters Who Deserve Their Own Spin Off," which included Mystique. Campbell wrote:

X-Men Origins: Mystique would be very cool, because Raven Darkholme is such a fascinating villain. Her solo film should be set during WWII in her days as a spy and feature her lesbian partner, Destiny (or hetero partner if you subscribe to the theory that Mystique was born a man and has been disguising herself primarily as a woman “as the ultimate in transvestism”). Brian De Palma should probably direct this spin off, since it’ll kind of be like a cross between Mission: Impossible and Femme Fatale.

That sounds like a great film idea, but it would probably end up being an actress other than Romijn, unless someone like De Palma could talk her into it. Meanwhile, Giant-Size Marvel's Richard Guion has posted a "Memo to Fox: Read Marvel Comics for the next Wolverine movie!" Guion would like to see the Wolverine films adapt stories straight out of the original comic books, and has a suggestion for a Mystique story:

I think a good second choice would be Jason Aaron and Ron Garney’s Get Mystique story. Wolverine takes a helluva lot of punishment in this story. Imagine if you got Rebecca Romijn back as Mystique. Do the flashback scenes in the old west and put her in one of the western-madam costumes. Have Hugh Jackman chase Romijn throughout the middle east in the present day, sniffing out her various disguises. That’s highly cinematic and after seeing Romijn outwit all kinds of men in Brian De Palma’s Femme Fatale, this is a slam dunk.

Posted by Geoff at 1:31 PM CDT
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Sunday, May 3, 2009


The New York Times' film critics Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott have written several Memos to Hollywood, published in today's edition. The format of the article echoes a recent running bit on Saturday Night Live, where "Weekend Update" co-anchors Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler would trade tirades in a segment called "Really?!?" In one of the memos, Scott suggests that Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese follow the lead of their fellow "movie brat" buddies Francis Ford Coppola and Brian De Palma by making smaller films:

To: Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese

From: A.O.S.

Think small again! Your buddy Francis Ford Coppola has made his last couple of movies on a relative shoestring in Romania and Argentina. Brian De Palma shot Redacted on video with an unknown cast. You are fortunate to be able to do just about anything you want, and you’ve certainly earned the right to work on a large scale. But it’s also sad to think that your days of small, scrappy, personal movies are behind you. Well, maybe they aren’t. Maybe you could go scout a location or two. Work with available light, a skeleton crew and unsung actors. Fly by the seat of your pants. Just for old times’ sake.

Posted by Geoff at 11:16 AM CDT
Updated: Sunday, May 3, 2009 11:19 AM CDT
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Wednesday, April 29, 2009
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Oliver Stone has decided to direct Michael Douglas in a sequel to Stone's Wall Street. Stone had initially stated months ago that he had no desire to be involved in the project, but the HR article suggests that a strong script by Allan Loeb has pulled Stone in. Ed Pressman will again produce, with Shia LaBeouf currently in talks to play a young upstart similar to Charlie Sheen's role in the first film. With Stone involved, this film suddenly looks much more promising...

Posted by Geoff at 12:24 AM CDT
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Liz Smith spotted Brian De Palma at "a recent bash for the Literati and Glitterati downtown on the East Side" of New York City. The party was for a new memoir by Allegra Huston, stepdaughter of director/actor John Huston, called Love Child. Also attending, among many others, was novelist Salmon Rushdie, who was photographed with De Palma and Tom Tykwer last February at the New York premiere of Tywer's The International.

Posted by Geoff at 12:06 AM CDT
Updated: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 12:08 AM CDT
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Monday, April 27, 2009
Wednesday night (April 29th), Dallas' 39th Annual USA Film Festival kicks off at 7pm with a 35th anniversary screening of Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise, which was partly filmed in Dallas. A digitally remastered print of Phantom will be screened for the occasion, and Paul Williams will be in attendance, as the festival pays tribute to the songwriter who portrayed the evil Swan in the film. Preceding the Phantom feature will be a film clip compilation tribute to Williams, and a special sneak-preview of a work-in-progress portrait of Williams by filmmaker Stephen Kessler. If anybody attends, please let us know about it, either through the comments, or email me!

Posted by Geoff at 9:44 AM CDT
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Sunday, April 26, 2009
The baby carriage used in the classic train station staircase shootout scene in Brian De Palma's The Untouchables is being put up for auction at California's Profiles In History. The auction runs from April 30-May 1st. The site suggests the "baby buggy" will sell between the $4,000 - $6,000 range, although a curator at The Pram Museum thinks that might be a bit high. Meanwhile, daddytypes.com, a "weblog for new dads," suggests that, next to the "long-lost original pram Eisenstein used in his staging of the Odessa Steps scene in Battleship Potemkin," the Untouchables pram "is the Most Important Stroller In Cinema History."
(Thanks to Ari!)

Posted by Geoff at 1:41 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, April 26, 2009 1:46 PM CDT
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Thursday, April 23, 2009


Jack Cardiff, painter, cinematographer, and director, has passed away at the age of 94. Cardiff was the cinematographer on Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger's The Red Shoes, a film that has had a significant influence on Brian De Palma. Cardiff also shot Alfred Hitchcock's Under Capricorn, and several other Powell/Pressburger films, among many many others. An obituary from the BBC discusses the painterly eye Cardiff brought to his film work:

Cardiff re-wrote the rules of cinematography, bringing a painter's eye to the craft. Indeed, he cited Rembrandt, Vermeer, Van Gogh and Caravaggio as inspirations for the light and colour of Black Narcissus.

He was a painter himself, and portraits of some of the actors with whom he worked have been exhibited.

In Michael Powell's The Red Shoes, the 18-minute dance sequence by Moira Shearer, filmed by Cardiff, was described by Martin Scorsese as "a moving painting".

"Michael was a great man to work with," Powell once said. "I was the sort of person to suggest a lot of crazy ideas, and he took them seriously."

He worked on another Powell classic, A Matter of Life and Death.

Posted by Geoff at 10:16 PM CDT
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Jeremy Richey at Moon In The Gutter has posted a nice collection of select images from Brian De Palma's Femme Fatale, as part of an ongoing series called "Images From The Greatest Films Of The Decade." Richey writes that "every shot in this film screams Brian De Palma. Had I never seen the film, I would still be able to immediately name who directed it just from these ten shots without problem. Femme Fatale will no doubt be one of the most controversial choices for this series, but it is still the only film of the decade that I literally stood up and applauded for at the end."

Posted by Geoff at 2:06 PM CDT
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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Cult star Brinke Stevens, credited as "Girl #3 in Bathroom" in Brian De Palma's Body Double (1984), was asked by Fangoria's Sean Abley about "the weirdest film, TV show or commercial from which you still earn residuals"-- Stevens' reply:

I’ve made SO much money from Brian De Palma’s BODY DOUBLE, it’s kinda ridiculous. The residuals are now down to about $8 per check, but they still come in the mail. Back in the 1980s, I’d turned down that movie three times (my agent thought he was making a porno film), but I finally agreed to a meeting. De Palma and I got along great (I was a big fan of PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE). At the end of our meeting, he said, “I really like you and want to use you in this film, but I’m not sure how yet. Just show up for work on Monday.”

I showed up at the studio on Monday. Every time De Palma walked past me, I’d raise an eyebrow, as if to ask “Got anything for me yet?” He’d merely shrug, and say, “Come back tomorrow.” I returned every day that week. Usually, I went home at the end of the day, not having worked at all. Finally, he put me in a few scenes, and my name is listed in the credits. With residuals, I’ve made over $10,000 for that almost invisible performance. But what a joy to hang out on-set for a week and watch such an interesting filmmaker in action!

Abley then tells Stevens, "OK, my friend, actor Michael Kearns, had the exact same story about BODY DOUBLE! He sat around for a week, then had three lines or something and continues to make bank from it! Nice."

Meanwhile, Entertainment Weekly's Owen Gleiberman blogs about the recently deceased Marilyn Chambers, calling her "the first crossover adult star." After making her mark in adult films, David Cronenberg cast Chambers in the lead role of his 1977 horror film Rabid. Gleiberman runs a link from there to De Palma's initial idea to cast porn star Annette Haven in Body Double:

By starring in Rabid, Chambers effectively blazed a trail, one that, as it turned out, went cold fairly quickly. In our own time, we’ve seen adult-film stars become icons of kitsch -- like Ron Jeremy, the burly "Hedgehog" who gets cast in bit parts whenever a director wants to lend a comedy a bit of cheap “underground” cachet (e.g., Class of Nuke 'Em High 3), or Traci Lords, who has carved out a TV and movie career lampooning her earlier infamy. And, of course, the adult superstar Jenna Jameson is a one-woman self-promotion machine. Marilyn Chambers, though, enjoyed her short-lived mainstream breakthrough near the end of the porno-chic era, when it wasn’t just a cool-cred joke or a naked PR stunt. Her role in Rabid seemed to open the door to further possibilities. Seven years later, in 1984, director Brian De Palma flirted with casting another '70s adult-film star -- Annette Haven -- in the role of triple-X actress Holly Body in Body Double. But the idea fell by the wayside (there were reports that it was nixed by the studio), and the part went to Melanie Griffith instead. By that point, it was clear that these two worlds were not destined, at least in America, to do much in the way of cross-pollinating.

Posted by Geoff at 11:34 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, April 19, 2009 11:47 PM CDT
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