#film

Kim Masters:

Moving fast to replace David Fincher on its highly anticipated Steve Jobs movie, Sony Pictures is in talks with Danny Boyle to direct the biopic of the late Apple Computer co-founder. Boyle is said to have approached Leonardo DiCaprio to star.

Not as good as the Fincher/Christian Bale combo, but could be a lot worse.

Interestingly enough, Bale got his role in American Psycho when DiCaprio dropped out. (Though Bale was obviously never actually committed here, it was more of a perfect pipe dream.) And the last time Boyle and DiCaprio worked together was the movie DiCaprio made instead of American Psycho: The Beach.

Alexander Huls:

Blur your eyes, and they might have all been the same tedious, manipulative movie. I felt nothing watching these characters disappear off-screen, hurtling toward whatever lies beyond. I’m no sociopath. The problem is that death at the movies has died. The movie industry has corrupted one of cinema’s — if not all of fiction’s — most emotionally taxing moments into hollow formula, the kind of thing that passes in the blink of a plot point leading to a literal, if not figurative, explosive finale that takes up half the budget. Considering this, it’s odd that death’s killer is the new, risk-averse economic logic of Hollywood.

Hard to argue given the plots of so many movies these days — naturally, many based on comics. Hollywood has conquered death — and cheapened it in the process.

Carrie Rickey:

Bale is 40 years old. Onscreen for 28 years, he’s been starring in feature films nearly as long as Barrymore (32 years), Daniel Day-Lewis (also 32 years), and Tom Hanks (30 years). Unlike those performers, who almost always play leads, Bale is the prince of ensemble movies, feeding off the actors around him, elevating their performances as they electrify his. Excepting American Psycho and The Machinist, where he is the lead, Bale is an accomplished team player. It’s typical for Bale to play a role like G-man Melvin Purvis to Johnny Depp’s sensual John Dillinger in Public Enemies, or a haunted, prosthetic-legged bounty hunter to Russell Crowe’s charismatic, nimble outlaw in 3:10 To Yuma, or the introverted fanboy dazzled by glam-rock extroverts Ewan McGregor and Jonathan Rhys Meyers in Velvet Goldmine. Even when he’s the eponymous character in the Dark Knight trilogy, he’s one in the ensemble.

Crazy to think that Bale’s career is nearly as long as those of Day-Lewis and Hanks (Barrymore, of course, was also a child star). And what a career it’s turning out to be. No question he’ll win another Oscar when all is said and done.

In fact, the main thing holding him back from another Best Actor award may be his reluctance to take true leading roles. Christian Bale is someone who absolutely could be a Tom Cruise-type movie star. But he chooses not to be. As Rickey points out, even the Dark Knight trilogy isn’t your typical formulaic movie star stuff. The closest he got to that may be the awful Terminator movie he made (which he was fine in, though everything else about it was pretty awful). And that garnered him more attention for other reasons

I’m glad Rickey took the time to single out Laurel Canyon as well. A very underrated film. 

Now let’s hope he gets the chance to portray Steve Jobs. Though you do have to wonder if it’s a role he would really want…

Kim Masters:

A source with ties to the studio says Fincher potentially could re-enter negotiations but that the fee he is seeking is “ridiculous,” adding, “You’re not doing Transformers here. You’re not doing Captain America. This is quality — it’s not screaming commerciality. He should be rewarded in success but not up front.”

He apparently was asking for a $10 million up-front fee, as well as control over marketing. I say give it to him. Then get Christian Bale.