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Exclusive Passion
Interviews:

Brian De Palma
Karoline Herfurth
Leila Rozario

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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
Shivers

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
supernatural
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

« August 2012 »
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Interviews...

De Palma interviewed
in Paris 2002

De Palma discusses
The Black Dahlia 2006


Enthusiasms...

The Virtuoso
of the 7th Art

The De Palma Touch

The Swan Archives

Carrie...A Fan's Site

Phantompalooza

Paul Schrader

Alfred Hitchcock
The Master Of Suspense

Alfred Hitchcock Films

Snake Eyes
a la Mod

Mission To Mars
a la Mod

Sergio Leone
and the Infield
Fly Rule

Movie Mags

Directorama

The Filmmaker Who
Came In From The Cold

Jim Emerson on
Greetings & Hi, Mom!

Scarface: Make Way
For The Bad Guy

The Big Dive
(Blow Out)

Carrie: The Movie

Deborah Shelton
Official Web Site

The Phantom Project

Welcome to the
Offices of Death Records

The Carlito's Way
Fan Page

The House Next Door

Kubrick on the
Guillotine

FilmLand Empire

Astigmia Cinema

LOLA

Cultural Weekly

A Lonely Place

The Film Doctor

italkyoubored

Icebox Movies

Medfly Quarantine

Not Just Movies

Hope Lies at
24 Frames Per Second

Motion Pictures Comics

Diary of a
Country Cinephile

So Why This Movie?

Obsessive Movie Nerd

Nothing Is Written

Ferdy on Films

Cashiers De Cinema

This Recording

Mike's Movie Guide

Every '70s Movie

Dangerous Minds

EatSleepLiveFilm

No Time For
Love, Dr. Jones!

The former
De Palma a la Mod
site

Entries by Topic
A note about topics: Some blog posts have more than one topic, in which case only one main topic can be chosen to represent that post. This means that some topics may have been discussed in posts labeled otherwise. For instance, a post that discusses both The Boston Stranglers and The Demolished Man may only be labeled one or the other. Please keep this in mind as you navigate this list.
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Cop-Out
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Dancing In The Dark
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De Palma Discussion
Demolished Man
Dionysus In '69
Dressed To Kill
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Femme Fatale
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Get To Know Your Rabbit
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Happy Valley
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Hi, Mom!
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Inspired by De Palma
Iraq, etc.
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Lithgow
Magic Hour
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Montreal World Film Fest
Mr. Hughes
Murder a la Mod
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Passion
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Print The Legend
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Raising Cain
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Redacted
Responsive Eye
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Monday, August 6, 2012
'FEMME FATALE' CLIMAX MAY HAVE BEEN INSPIRED BY SAUTET
ARMOND WHITE SAYS NO DOUBT ABOUT INFLUENCE OF STUNNING MONTAGE IN 'THE THINGS OF LIFE'
Armond White, writing about the current Claude Sautet retrospective at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, says that "a stunning montage" in Sautet's Les Choses de la Vie (The Things Of Life) "no doubt inspired Brian De Palma’s Femme Fatale climax." Sautet's film, released in 1970, established his international reputation. White states that it is "a more operatic version of the usual Sautet melodrama." According to White, "The montage details life in shocking, lyrical increments. Jean Boffety’s cinematography captures natural light and existential tragedy in captivating, musical counterpoint. Sautet may be practiced in face-to-face contretemps but the car crash sequence–a Nouvelle Vague salute to the crisis/memories/fate flashbacks of Hollywood’s classic Slattery’s Hurricane–is one of cinema’s most exquisite examples of melding kinetics to philosophy."

The Saute retrospective, running through August 16, is named after The Things Of Life, and includes that film along with 12 other Sautet features.

Posted by Geoff at 1:11 AM CDT
Updated: Monday, August 6, 2012 1:12 AM CDT
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Sunday, August 5, 2012
'PASSION' ON COVER OF FILM TV MAGAZINE
AS ITALIAN PUBLICATION PREVIEWS UPCOMING VENICE FILM FESTIVAL
Reader Maurizio Rossi sends word of the new issue of the Italian magazine Film Tv, which features an image from Brian De Palma's Passion on the cover. Rossi explains that the cover's accompanying headline is a play on the Italian title of Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. The Italian title for Roeg's film is A Venezia un Dicembre rosso shocking, which translates to "A Shocking Red December In Venice," according to Rossi. So the magazine's headline, "A Venezia una Mostra Rosso Passion," translates to "A Red Passion Film Festival in Venice." The issue previews the upcoming Venice Film Festival.

Posted by Geoff at 12:49 PM CDT
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Saturday, August 4, 2012
JOSEPH KAHN: 'MOVIES NEED MORE DE PALMA'
IRRITATED BY PERVASIVE USE OF MULTIPLE CAMERAS IN FILMS TODAY

Posted by Geoff at 10:15 AM CDT
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Tuesday, July 31, 2012
'PASSION' FAN POSTERS
From Love In The Time Of Crossing Over...

And from Donald Devienne...


Posted by Geoff at 6:55 PM CDT
Updated: Tuesday, July 31, 2012 7:06 PM CDT
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Saturday, July 28, 2012
KAROLINE EXCITED ABOUT 'PASSION' AT VENICE
MESSAGE POSTED ON FACEBOOK PAGE THIS MORNING
Karoline Herfurth posted the following message on her Facebook page this morning:

(Translated from German)
"Is that not awesome about Venice? Wow Wow Wow! Man am I excited about the movie! Just had synchronous via satellite with Mr. De Palma ... :-) :-)"

Posted by Geoff at 11:52 AM CDT
Updated: Thursday, August 9, 2012 12:35 AM CDT
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Thursday, July 26, 2012
'PASSION' TO PREMIERE, COMPETE AT VENICE
MALICK'S 'TO THE WONDER' ALSO COMPETING; JURY HEADED BY MICHAEL MANN
Brian De Palma's Passion has been selected as one of 18 films to compete at this year's Venice Film Festival, which runs August 29 to September 8. De Palma's film, officially a French-German production, is listed as running a lean and mean 94 minutes. Also among the selections is Terrence Malick's To The Wonder. Both films feature Rachel McAdams, who, according to the Hollywood Reporter, is expected to appear at the festival. The line-up was announced this morning, with an additional secret competition title to be announced at a later date. Many are speculating that the additional film will be Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master.

Ever since De Palma began shooting Passion earlier this year, reports have erroneously been stating that it has been six years since De Palma's last film. In fact, his most recent film, Redacted, premiered at Venice five years ago, in 2007. That film also played at Telluride and Toronto within days of its Venice premiere. While the Toronto International Film Festival yesterday announced many titles that will screen there this year, there are still more titles to be announced. Telluride keeps its line-up secret until the film is actually playing. The Deauville American Film Festival announced it's slate today, as well, but Passion was not included.

"In preparing Venice," said Venice Fest director Alberto Barbera at a press conference in Rome today (via Variety), "I have very much admired and envied my friend and colleague who heads the Toronto Film Festival. He has an easy job: He can take 350 movies, and therefore accept almost anything. We have chosen a much tougher path, in which, after lots of discussions, we had to say 'no' a lot. And it was very tough." The Globe And Mail further quotes Barbera: "The main recurring theme is the crisis. The economic crisis, which is having devastating social effects, but also the crisis of values, the political crisis." Passion appears to fit this theme, with its focus on the politics of the corporate business world.

Despite the crisis, Barbera wanted to showcase "a great productive ferment" in the industry, according to the Globe And Mail. "We have taken risks," Barbera is quoted telling reporters. "There are many established directors but also less famous directors and many unknown young directors from countries without cinematic traditions and without real access to the market. Festivals should revert to their original roles of exploration, of scoping out innovation, instead of relying only on the established producers.”

The jury at this year's Venice fest will be headed by Michael Mann, who will also screen his out-of-competition documentary Witness: Libya. The closing film will be the out-of-competition L'homme qui rit, Jean-Pierre Ameris' remake of Paul Leni's The Man Who Laughs, a film which factored into the plot of De Palma's The Black Dahlia. Opening the fest, also out-of-competition, will be Mira Nair's The Reluctant Fundamentalist.

Among the competition films announced are Olivier Assayas' Something In The Air, Harmony Korine's Spring Breakers, and Marco Bellocchio's Dormant Beauty. Out of competition titles include Robert Redford's The Company You Keep, Spike Lee's Bad 25 (a documentary of Michael Jackson's Bad), Ariel Vromen's The Iceman, and Henry-Alex Rubin's Disconnect.

As this year marks the Venice Festival's 80th anniversary (although it is only the 69th festival), it will feature a new regular section, Venice Classics, which will screen restored versions of films that premiered at Venice. Michael Cimino is expected to attend this year's screening of the Criterion restored version of Heaven's Gate, which had its premiere at the Venice Festival in 1982. Other titles in the Classics section this year include Billy Wilder's Sunset Boulevard and Orson Welles' Chimes At Midnight.


Posted by Geoff at 7:26 AM CDT
Updated: Friday, July 27, 2012 7:04 AM CDT
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Sunday, July 22, 2012
DE PALMA SERIES IN PARIS & ARGENTINA
PARIS: NEW PRINTS OF 'DRESSED TO KILL' & 'BLOW OUT', MORE
ARGENTINA TV: FILMOTECA PROGRAMS WEEK OF LESSER-SEEN WORKS
ALSO, LONDON: RARE 'BODY DOUBLE' SCREENING (OVER-AND-DONE)
ALSO, U.S.: AMC CHANNEL FEATURES 'MISSION TO MARS' WITH POP-UP STORY NOTES

This photo was sent in by reader Andreas Kröneck, who found himself standing in the lobby of Paris' Cinema le Grand Action just after a double feature last night, made up of brand new 2K digital prints of Brian De Palma's Dressed To Kill and Blow Out. According to the theater's website, champagne and snacks were to be served during an intermission between the two films. There will be more chances to see these new prints, as the Le Grand Action is taking the opportunity to run a De Palma cycle through August, featuring the two aforementioned films, as well as Body Double (which Andreas was aiming to catch last night), Casualties Of War, The Bonfire Of The Vanities, Carrie, Snake Eyes, Mission: Impossible, and Redacted.

'MURDER A LA MOD', 'GREETINGS', 'SISTERS', & 'REDACTED' PROGRAMMED BY CRITICS IN ARGENTINA
In Argnetina this week (July 23-26), the Channel 7 program Filmoteca will show four lesser-seen De Palma films selected by film critics Fernando Martín Peña and Fabio Manes. Each film will be introduced by the respected critics (an example of Peña's writing can be read in this translated piece on Fritz Lang's Metropolis). The films scheduled are: Redacted (Monday, July 23rd), Greetings (Tuesday, July 24th), Murder A La Mod (Wednesday, July 25th), and Sisters (Thursday, July 26th).

'BODY DOUBLE' IN LONDON
Late notice here, but De Palma's Body Double had two late night screenings this past weekend at the Hackney Picture House. "One of the highlights of the year on Friday and Saturday night this week," Capital Celluloid's Tony Paley posted Friday. "Two very rare screenings of Brian De Palma's underrated mid-1980s Hitchcockian thriller." Paley added Dave Kehr's review from the Chicago Reader:

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"It pains me to say it, but I think Brian De Palma has gotten a bad rap on this one: the first hour of this thriller represents the most restrained, accomplished, and effective filmmaking he has ever done, and if the film does become more jokey and incontinent as it follows its derivative path, it never entirely loses the goodwill De Palma engenders with his deft opening sequences. Craig Wasson is an unemployed actor who is invited to house-sit a Hollywood Hills mansion; he becomes voyeuristically involved with his beautiful neighbor across the way, and witnesses her murder. Those who have seen Vertigo will have solved the mystery within the first 15 minutes, but De Palma's use of frame lines and focal lengths to define Wasson's point of view is so adept that the suspense takes hold anyway. De Palma's borrowings from Hitchcock can no longer be characterized as hommages or even as outright thievery; his concentration on Hitchcockian motifs is so complete and so fetishized that it now seems purely a matter of repetition compulsion. But Body Double is the first De Palma film to make me think that all of his practice is leading at least to the beginnings of perfection. With Gregg Henry and Melanie Griffith."
By Dave Kehr
-----------------------------------

'MISSION TO MARS' WITH POP-UP STORY NOTES ON AMC TUESDAY NIGHT
Finally, the AMC network will show De Palma's Mission To Mars Tuesday (July 24th) at 8pm eastern, with pop-up story notes. The channel is also showing the film today (Sunday) at 5pm eastern, but it is unclear whether that showing will include the story notes. In any case, for those who can't (or don't wish to) catch the program on the newtwork, the story notes can be read on the AMC Blog.

Posted by Geoff at 2:14 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, July 22, 2012 2:19 PM CDT
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Monday, July 16, 2012


Posted by Geoff at 11:23 PM CDT
Updated: Monday, July 16, 2012 11:24 PM CDT
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Saturday, July 14, 2012
DE PALMA’S COLUMBO SCRIPT DISCOVERED
'SHOOTING SCRIPT', WRITTEN WITH JAY COCKS IN 1973, WAS NEVER PRODUCED
An unproduced script for an episode of NBC's Columbo, credited to Joseph P. Gillis and Brian De Palma, has recently been discovered. The episode, titled Shooting Script, is dated July-August 1973, which means it would have been aiming to be part of the third season of the iconic show. As Joseph P. Gillis is a character from Billy Wilder's Sunset Boulevard, I asked De Palma if it was a pseudonym for someone. He said Gillis is actually Jay Cocks, the TIME magazine film critic who was one of De Palma's best friends, and who later worked with De Palma on the Nazi Gold screenplay (the two of them together also rewrote the opening crawl for their friend George Lucas' Star Wars). De Palma said he came up with an idea that he thought would be good for Columbo, but he could not recall why it was never produced. It was the only TV work De Palma has ever done. "The beginning and the end of my TV career," he said.

A shame it was never produced, as it is a terrific script very much in the De Palma vein. Columbo usually began each episode showing a crime in all its detail, and De Palma's script opens with a movie-within-the-movie, actually a videotape shot by a crime author who seems to have been modeled somewhat on Truman Capote. Quoting Dostoyevsky in his narration, Quentin Lee is making a video diary of what he calls "a perfect crime," in which he plans to record a murder, the victim seemingly chosen at random, although it happens to be a popular talk show host (named Duane Downs) whose show the author has appeared on several times.

One key character is an actor named Lynn Loring who does a one-man show. "I'm famous for my Treplev," Loring tells Downs, who is clueless as to the reference, but we later find that the well-read Quentin Lee is able to explain in full to Lieutenant Columbo (he tells Columbo that Treplev is "a young and rather impetuous poet in Chekhov's play -- The Seagull").

At one point in the story, Quentin Lee has taken over hosting duties for Downs' talk show for a special tribute to Downs, of which the script naturally takes a cynical view. Columbo visits the set during taping to ask Lee some questions, and Lee tricks him during a commercial break, so that Columbo suddenly finds the bright lights shining on him as he uncomfortably becomes part of the show. This of course makes it all the easier for Lee to include his conversation with Columbo as part of his video diary of the "perfect crime." Prior to this scene, Lee once tries to tape Columbo, who has arrived unannounced at the author's apartment, and Columbo tells him to stop. "Uhh," says Columbo, "would you mind not doing that, Mr. Lee? I get awful self-conscious. I don't even let my wife take home movies of me." Lee presses Columbo to make a statement about the murder on tape, and effectively chases him out the door with his camera.

Loring's glossy headshots lead to a Blow-Up-style investigation of some photographs, and get this-- the photographer's name is Spielberg. This was in 1973, before Steven Spielberg had made Jaws and become a household name (otherwise, the reference may have been too obvious). Spielberg had directed one of the earliest episodes of Columbo in 1971. Titled Murder By The Book, Spielberg considers it one of his two best TV episodes. A later 1974 episode of Columbo did feature a boy genius character named Steve Spielberg.

In Shooting Script, Spielberg is one of three graduate students who are shadowing Columbo as he investigates the crime. Their first names are never mentioned, so they are known as Chapman, Brooks, and Spielberg. "May I ask you a question," Columbo says to Spielberg early on. "Why is it you don't ask any questions?" Spielberg replies, "I'm into electronics. Surveillance devices. Photographic equipment." The Spielberg character seems very much like the De Palma surrogate played by Keith Gordon in De Palma's Dressed To Kill, and while he doesn't say much, when he finally does have something to say, everybody perks up-- it is Spielberg who provides the spark of the idea that allows Columbo to finally catch Quentin Lee. When Columbo and the graduate students are trying to figure out how they might find Quentin Lee's incriminating video tapes, it is mentioned by Chapman that keeping the tapes at his apartment would be too obvious. "I think that's exactly what he'd do," Spielberg suddenly chimes in...

---------------------------------

They all stop -- turn to Spielberg. This is the first time he's really said much, and they are all taken aback.

SPIELBERG

Let's don't depart too soon from his megalomania. First, he wouldn't let the tape be far from his sight. Second, his overweening ego would go for a stunt like the Purloined Letter, as it was described in the story by Edgar Allan Poe. In that story, the incriminating letter was placed on a desk in plain view -- but along with a number of other letters. The analogy to Lee's tape library would be perfect -- and it is the kind of pseudo-literary trick that would appeal to Lee. No matter what diversionary ploy is used, it is quite accurate that there are too many tapes to go through all of them. Therefore, I suggest that we get Lee to lead us to the tape itself.
(beat)
The chili is very good, Lieutenant.

---------------------------------

There is a really nice write-up of the script by Dene over at The Story Of Euston Films. Dene fits the script in nicely with the Columbo timeline, and suggests that Paul Williams could have played the author/criminal.

Posted by Geoff at 7:22 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, July 15, 2012 2:00 PM CDT
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Thursday, July 12, 2012
DONAGGIO RECORDING 'PASSION' SCORE IN PRAGUE
THURS & FRIDAY, WITH MASSARA CONDUCTING CZECH NATIONAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Articles out of the Czech Republic today are stating that Brian De Palma is involved with the recording of the score for his new film, Passion, Thursday and Friday in Prague. Pino Donaggio is composing the score, which is being performed by the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Natale Massara. The music is being recorded at Studio CNSO Hostivař (pictured above), one of the largest recording studios in Europe.

Posted by Geoff at 8:46 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, July 13, 2012 7:16 AM CDT
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