Screen Talk: Unkind cuts


Hollywood is mulling the impact of a small yet impactful number of job losses recently felt at DreamWorks, Steven Spielberg's studio.

It axed 10 employee roles, which, unless you are one of the individuals let go, doesn't seem too bad. But the studio only has 80 staff in total and the majority of those pink-slipped come from the physical production department – those that make the movies. And long-time physical production executive Steve Molen, who started at Amblin and has American Beauty, Saving Private Ryan, War Horse and The Help on his previous duty roster, was among the departures. There's talk of streamlining and efficiency but the immediate and obvious effect is DreamWorks, which has a deal for film production with India's Reliance Entertainment, will be making fewer films. The company also will cut positions in its legal, insurance and IT departments.

Miller's tale

Former Prison Break star Wentworth Miller's attempts to write tasty roles while recasting himself as a screenwriter is gaining momentum. Miller's latest original screenplay, The Disappointments Room, has attracted a producing team that includes the muscle of Oscar winner Nicolas Chartier. Chartier was famously banned from attending the Academy Awards when his film The Hurt Locker won best picture after he contacted several voting members so they would vote for his movie instead of Avatar. Chartier is one of the producers bringing Miller's latest script to the screen. It tells the tale of a family that moves into a mysterious old house in the country that has a dark past. Miller's writing move is already successful and he has major-league representation for his efforts with ICM. His first writer's stab, Stoker, directed by Chan-wook Park, is in post-production and includes turns from Nicole Kidman, Mia Wasikowska and Dermot Mulroney. It's another family tale that details the story of a young woman mourning the loss of her father when a mysterious uncle shows up.

A safe bet

Gambling as a subject matter for film-makers has long fascinated Hollywood and there are no signs of the stakes changing. Brad Furman is throwing in his hand to direct Runner, Runner, a thriller which takes place amid the world of online gambling. Written by Brian Koppelman and David Levien, who teamed on high-stakes backroom poker drama Rounders in 1998, Runner, Runner has secured the acting chops of Justin Timberlake and is hoping Ben Affleck will co-star. A certain Mr Leonardo DiCaprio is among the script's backers via his production banner Appian Way.

Ark life

A fresh take on the biblical tale of Noah and his ark has its launch date set for March 2014. Forward planning is clearly essential for such a big project to sail on to global cinema screens for studio backer Paramount Pictures. It will star Russell Crowe and be directed by Darren Aronofsky. John Logan, who recently wrote Hugo and whose writing résumé boasts Gladiator, starring Crowe in an Oscar-winning turn, is doing rewrites on the screenplay by Aronofsky and Ari Handel.

Get Carter

Plans to scare up audiences for a horror film about a young girl who returns to her father's Louisiana home after an accident robs her of the use of her legs only to find herself confronting an enraged ghost are ramping up. Joelle Carter, a lead on FX's Justified, has joined the cast of Jessabelle, alongside Sarah Snook and Mark Webber. It is being directed by Kevin Greutert, director of Saw 3D and Saw VI and is written by Robert Ben Garant, the writer on comedies Night at the Museum and The Pacifier. Carter will play Snook's mother in the scary movie backed by Lionsgate, which is shooting now in North Carolina.

Arts and Entertainment

game of thrones reviewWarning: spoilers

Arts and Entertainment
The original Star Wars trio of Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill

George Osborne confirms Star Wars 8 will film at Pinewood Studios in time for 4 May


Arts and Entertainment
Haunted looks: Matthew Macfadyen and Timothy Spall star in ‘The Enfield Haunting’

North London meets The Exorcist in eerie suburban drama


Arts and Entertainment

Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year


Arts and Entertainment
Kit Harington plays MI5 agent Will Holloway in Spooks: The Greater Good

'You can't count on anyone making it out alive'film
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night
    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

    Everyone is talking about The Trews

    Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living