Trailer Spotlight: Playing For Keeps

All right, two sports-related Gerard Butler trailers released within a month! I wonder if it’s because of the Olympics?? First we’ve got a surfer movie, now soccer, not that I’m complaining 🙂 Now, this one was supposed to be released last March as I included it in my most anticipated movies for the first quarter of 2012. Well, when I mentioned this one in the GB Special Post, at the time it was still called Playing The Field.

Anyway, we’ve now got a brand new trailer and updated synopsis [per Yahoo Movies]:

A charming, down-on-his luck former soccer star returns home to put his life back together. Looking for a way to rebuild his relationship with his son, he gets roped into coaching the boy’s soccer team. But his attempts to finally become an “adult” are met with hilarious challenges from the attractive “soccer moms” who pursue him at every turn.

Well, I like this trailer a bit better than Chasing Mavericks’. Well for one, Gerry gets to keep his Scottish brogue, wahoo! Plus, I kind of like seeing him with kids. I mean the last time he played dad to a little boy was in the wonderful indie Dear Frankie, and he’s definitely a natural with them. Then there’s the supporting cast: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Dennis Quaid and Judy Greer, though I wish Uma and Judy get at least a line in the trailer?? Initially I thought Biel only had a small role, but it seems that she’s got second billing here.

Ah well, I’m going to file this one under ‘promising’ even though the trailer itself is rather meh, and that song is annoyingly schmaltzy. This curiously Mondrian-styled poster doesn’t exactly scream artsy either. But hey, I like the idea of Gerry + soccer, and it’s helmed by a pretty credible director, Gabriele Muccino, the Italian director who helped Will Smith got his second Oscar nomination in The Pursuit of Happyness. Interestingly, that one also features a single dad and his young son.

In any case, I’m glad they switched this from a baseball-themed movie to soccer when Butler was cast [per LA Times blog], and the fact that he was involved in a lot of soccer charity match, including this year’s star-studded Soccer Aid, he’s perfect for this role! It’s poised to be a feel-good dramedy this Winter, but here’s hoping it offers us something more than that.

Updated 11/29: Playing For Keeps Featurette on GB’s character George


Playing For Keeps
is released December 7.


Thoughts on this trailer, folks?

Casting and Misc. News: FlixChatter’s Highlights

Happy Friday, everyone! I haven’t done a news post in a while and there have been some interesting developments of late, so let’s get to ’em, shall we?

  • Terrence Malick’s Untitled Love Story
    The notoriously reclusive and meticulous director Terrence Malick is reportedly been gathering up a cast for his yet untitled love drama. And what an impressive cast that is. So far Christian Bale, Javier Bardem, Rachel McAdams and Olga Kurylenko have signed on to star in what’s been described as a “powerful and moving love story.” Malick is perhaps the opposite of the workaholic Ridley Scott, as he often goes for years in between films. He’s only got eleven movies under his belt, and was nominated for best director and adapted screenplay for The Thin Red Line.

    I confess I have never watched Bardem in anything, for some reason none of his movies interest me, yet, nothing against him personally. I’m most excited to see Bale here, as the first time he’s in a romantic drama under Malick’s direction was in the Pocahontas story The New World, it turns out to be one of my favorite role ever. He might be famous for his bad-ass roles where he’s either heroic or deranged, but his quieter, more vulnerable side is just as compelling, if not more so. He was great in the indie drama Metroland with Emily Watson, so a return to such a genre is definitely welcomed in my book.
    …….

  • Solaris meets Wall-E starring Keanu Reeves?
    That combo description is courtesy of /Film, which is the impression they got about this sci-fi project called Passengers and its potential director. Here’s the synopsis: Passengers is set in the future on a spacecraft making a centuries-long interstellar voyage to a new planet. Due to a computer glitch, a single passenger (Reeves) awakens from cryogenic sleep 90 years before anyone else. Faced with the prospect of growing old and dying alone, he, in turn, awakens a beautiful woman.

    Italian director Gabriele Muccino directed Will Smith in The Pursuit of Happyness and Seven Pounds, and was known for directing romance and family dramas in the home country. The first time I heard of Muccino was when there’s news circulating that Gerard Butler is interested in working with him in a baseball drama Slide. Not sure if that’d happen now that Butler’s signed to do Machine Gun Preacher. As for Passengers, the role of the beautiful woman hasn’t been cast, and the casting agent in me thinks someone like Eva Green, Romola Garai, Olivia Wilde or Emily Mortimer would be nice, instead of going with more famous faces.

  • Did you know that John Malkovich – yes, that John Malkovich – has his own fashion label?
    I read about it a long while ago in CNN, in which he says “I’ve always had an interest in it and always loved doing it. I like design, I like details, to me it is just another form of self-expression.” His brand of eccentricity apparently also carries over to his fashion design, as this article by someone who knew him revealed “… [he] produce an elegant line in men’s clothing and also to name the collection after political tyrants or psychopaths. There is, for instance, the mini mullah coat, an ironic tribute to the former Taliban spokesman Abdul Salam Zaeef.” He was in Florence last month to promote his Technobohemian (say what?) fashion line in his Autumn/Winter 2010-11 collection. ”Technobohemian is a clothing line dedicated to the modern man,” he said to LifeinItaly.com. O-kay. If you’re curious what the heck his clothes look like, you can take a peek here, or as worn by Halle Berry’s gorgeous model partner Gabriel Aubrey.

    The 56-year old actor doesn’t stop there, he also owns a budget hotel called The Big Sleep Hotel in Eastbourne UK, because his friends and neighbor in Provence who’s a chocolate-heir-turned hotelier. Wow, I’d never guess that about Mr. Malkovich, but that’s cool!.
    …….

  • Carrie Underwood’s film debut in Soul Surfer
    The country singer is joining other singer-turned-actress in her film debut in an inspirational biopic about Bethany Hamilton. According to NY Daily News, the movie will tell the tale of how the Hawaiian native Hamilton, now 19, returned to professional surfing just months after losing her arm in a shark attack six years ago. Underwood plays Sarah Hill, a youth counselor at Hamilton’s church whose friendship and support played a huge role in the surfer’s unlikely comeback. Anna Sophia Robb (Race to Witch Mountain) will play the devout Christian teen surfer, with Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt as her parents, and Jack Nicholson’s daughter Lorraine will play Hamilton’s best friend, who was with her at the time of the attack. Underwood will begin the shoot in the Hawaiian island of Oahu following her scheduled gig to sing the national anthem in this year’s Superbowl.
  • Johnny Depp back in the directing chair
    It’s well-known that Johnny Depp’s performance as pirate Jack Sparrow was inspired by the rock legend, and now he’s going to chronicle his life in a documentary. In the Fandango blog, he was quoted as saying: “Now that I’m wiser, and that enough time has passed, I can experience directing again. Already next week I’ll start working on a Keith Richards documentary. While I’m in Drvengrad, my editor is already working on kilometers of archive footage and footage of his concerts. I’m very touched that Keith agreed to show up in front of my cameras.”I didn’t know Depp directed a movie before, but according that blog, he not only directed but also wrote and starred (alongside Marlon Brando!) in The Brave, about an American Indian who is released from jail and given the opportunity to star in a snuff film. I’d be curious to see his directing skills, and how honest the documentary will be about the Rolling Stones’ guitarist’s drug abuse and other shenanigans.