February 14, 2008 | Comments ()

By Daniel Carlson | Trade News | February 14, 2008 |


After a few weeks of cold nights and weekends of scattered showers, spring is finally poking its tentative head out into Los Angeles. The sun is out, the strike is over, and now it’s time for the inevitable: Scheduling nightmares. Now that studios can have writers fix scripts, they’re shuffling their film release dates in an effort to balance out their 2008-09 slates. Perhaps the biggest move is Paramount’s decision to bump Star Trek back from this Christmas to May 8, 2009, though Paramount attributes the move to the fact that the film has better potential as a summer tentpole. Star Trek will have that week all to itself, since it’s now opening one week after Fox’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine and one week before Sony’s Angels and Demons, the sequel to The Da Vinci Code whose release was also delayed several months because of the strike. It also has moved David Fincher’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, starring Brad Pitt, from Nov. 26 to Dec. 19, essentially just shifting it from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Additionally, DreamWorks bumped Tropic Thunder from July 11 to Aug. 15. Consider yourselves informed.

This sounds painful: Fox has optioned the rights to Doug Brown’s memoir Just Do It: How One Couple Screwed Their Life and Love Back Together. As you may have already guessed from the book’s unfortunately pun-laden title, the book is about Brown and his wife, who challenge themselves to have sex daily for 101 days in a row, regardless of where they are or what they’re fighting about or (one assumes) whether they even had the strength or motivation. The book isn’t even out yet, so there’s no telling if it’s lame and jokey or just plain unsettling, but you just know this is gonna turn out to be the kind of boilerplate high-concept-but-not-really romantic comedy that Hollywood loves to make. Possible titles for the adaptation include Sextra Innings, Love Machines, and Dear God I Regret This.

Fox also announced this week that it has obtained the rights to make a big-screen version of “Ice Road Truckers,” the History Channel show about big-rig drivers who haul equipment over a highway made of ice in the Northwest Territories of Canada. The show is literally about driving a very long way while it’s cold, and it’s the History Channel’s highest-rated show. Not “Mail Call,” not “Band of Brothers” repeats, not “Every Single Thing You Ever Wanted to Know About Hitler.” It’s all about “Ice Road Truckers.” Fox hasn’t hired a writer yet, but who the hell cares.

Also, the news is a couple days old, but Roy Scheider died Sunday night. As is often the case with older actors, his final few credits are a poor reflection of what he could and did accomplish at his peak. He was great in The French Connection and William Friedkin’s Sorcerer, but he’ll be best remembered as Chief Brody from Jaws. Scheider was classic.

Anyway, on to the trailer watch. The first clip is for Morgan Spurlock’s new documentary, Where in the World Is Osama Bin Laden?, and if it’s anything like Super Size Me, it’ll be an entertaining look at modern culture mixed with hints of mildly misleading propaganda. (I mean, seriously, no one actually thinks you can eat McDonald’s all the time and not die.) Anyway, check it out:

Next up is the latest trailer for Taken, a thriller starring Liam Neeson as an ass-kicking operative out to rescue his daughter. I know what you’re all thinking; Van-Damme already went there in Sudden Death. Still, Taken looks like it could have potential. Don’t be thrown off by the subtitles; it’s directed by Pierre Morel, who also helmed District B13. One can only hope that Neeson engages in some parkour:

Daniel Carlson is the managing editor of Pajiba and a low-level employee at a Hollywood industry magazine. You can visit his blog, Slowly Going Bald.

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Trade News | February 14, 2008 | Comments ()



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