Screen Junkies » Gone Girl http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Wed, 26 Nov 2014 19:27:26 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Kim Dickens, Known For Playing The ‘Gone Girl’ Detective, Heading Over To ‘House Of Cards’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/kim-dickens-known-for-playing-the-gone-girl-detective-heading-over-to-house-of-cards/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/kim-dickens-known-for-playing-the-gone-girl-detective-heading-over-to-house-of-cards/#comments Thu, 16 Oct 2014 16:00:27 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=266253 Apparently, she can tolerate working for David Fincher.

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Kinda, sorta spoiler-y stuff for season 2 of House of Cards (but not Gone Girl) lies here. Just thought you should know before going further.

Kim Dickens served as a breakthrough star as the lead detective in Gone Girl, and now will be heading over to take that country sensibility to D.C. as she gets a recurring role on House of Cards. It’s not known who she’ll be playing or what her character will be doing, but she has to be a relative of Kate Mara, right? RIGHT? I mean, they look pretty similar. And since Mara’s character isn’t around anymore, there’s an opening for a diminutive, competent woman with a sensible hairstyle.

The series will hit Netflix in early 2015, which is, pleasantly, not far off. We’ll see how Dickens can serve as a bee in President Underwood’s bonnet.

(TV Line)

 

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The Seven Most Disappointing Book-to-Film Adaptations http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-seven-most-disappointing-book-to-film-adaptations/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/the-seven-most-disappointing-book-to-film-adaptations/#comments Tue, 07 Oct 2014 15:20:49 +0000 DustinSeibert http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=265696 Film adaptations rarely capture the nuances — subtle or otherwise — of their source material. Here are a few examples of those cinematic failures that either should have been done better, or never even attempted.

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Gillian Flynn’s 2012 novel Gone Girl, which you can’t ride a train in a major city without seeing at least one person reading, hit the cinema on Friday in an adaptation by David Fincher. I saw it over the weekend, and suffice it to say, Fincher has done it again, creating a solid, compelling film that justified the sold-out shows and audiences with which I had to contend. (All this despite a conclusion that angered me to no end, but I digress).

As bibliophiles can attest, many book-t0-film adaptations don’t work out quite as well. In fact, most of the time, they don’t. So many contemporary books that sit on the New York Times Bestseller list for any significant period of time are fast-tracked to become movies, and I wouldn’t be surprised if many of the authors that write them do so with that aspiration.

However, beloved canonical texts that are a half-century old at the very least come with so many years of interpretation and classroom curricula established around them that they’re arguably more difficult to adapt because so many people love them. For years I’ve envisioned a contemporary adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird with Brad Pitt playing Atticus Finch, but considering it’s one of the most loved books of all time, it could be the best movie Frank Darabont ever made and still piss people off. 

Film adaptations rarely capture the nuances — subtle or otherwise — of their source material. That’s somewhat expected when working with a limited run time, but when you have horribly miscast characters or whole plot lines dramatically reduced or removed altogether, the movie can become inherently crappy. Here are a few examples of those cinematic failures that either should have been done better, or never even attempted.

1. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1979): Maya Angelou’s 1969 autobiography is loaded with very touchy, adult themes (child rape, racism) that wouldn’t translate well into a made-for-TV film in 2014, let alone in 1979 when it was still a big deal to hear the word “damn” uttered on a major network program. Despite a cast full of great, now-departed black actresses (Ruby Dee, Esther Rolle, Madge Sinclair), the film couldn’t carry the weight of its themes on its medium. Since Angelou recently died, it would be a great time for studios to consider a big-screen adaptation.

2. Wanted (2008): Mark Millar’s original comic series, about a young heir to a super villain named Wesley who rises from loser-dom to realize his own villainy, is a classic among comic lovers despite being only a decade old. The 2008 adaptation swapped out the superhero theme for career assassins and focused more on Angelina Jolie’s Fox, Wesley’s mentor. It would’ve worked just fine as a standalone action film, but when compared to the book, it falls flat in almost every regard. Despite it’s R rating, the film is far more restrained film than the book, and Fox, a quick-witted, sassy black woman in the book, is portrayed by a sultry, somewhat annoying Jolie. A $3.99-Blu-ray-bin-at-Best-Buy type of flick, really.

3. Beloved (1998): This one isn’t even very fair, because no one had any damn business trying to pull off Toni Morrison’s Pulitzer Prize-winning classic for the big screen. The book has a fractured narrative that demands at least two readings to soak it all in, so the film was bound to disappoint. The performances from Oprah Winfrey and company were decent, but this remains perhaps the least adaptable text on this entire list. 

4. The Scarlet Letter (1995): I was a teenager when I read Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel and when this Demi Moore-led fiasco came out, and I remember how the movie was marketed as Zalman King-esque soft-core porn undeserving of the source material. The book explored complicated themes of sin and adultery in a puritanical society and has enjoyed time firmly planted on banned books lists for decades. The movie explored…Demi Moore’s skin. Perhaps the most egregious sin of the film is its happily-ever-after ending that stands in diametric opposition to the book’s. You ought to be ashamed, Roland Joffe.

5. The Namesake (2006): One of the worst sins of movie adaptations is the distillation of important plot threads. Taking a couple things out for the sake of brevity and running time is one thing; quickly glossing over significant events and relationships established in the book is another. It bugged me to see one of Gogol’s relationships from the book glossed over so quickly in the film, which wasn’t so bad standing alone. Points added back for seeing Kumar play a serious role.

6. The Great Gatsby (2013): The only example in this list of a book and movie I hated equally. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s magnum opus is a ridiculously overrated piece of literature, but Baz Luhrmann‘s glossy, gauche 3D adaptation made me want to jam my old, dog-eared paperback in my garbage disposal. Leonardo DiCaprio is, in theory, one of the best choices to play the doomed Jay Gatsby, but he was so much more compelling playing a very similar role in The Wolf of Wall Street from the same year that it’d be a no-brainer if I had to choose.

7. The Complete Persepolis (2007): Similar to The Namesake, another example of a film that would’ve been fine on its own had it not been for superior source material. Persepolis the graphic novel is 341 pages of author Marjane Satrapi’s autobiographical story of a young girl rebelling against Islamic fundamentalism in 20th Century Iran; while the approach of having the animation as a mirror reflection of the book’s art (a la Sin City) is cool, the movie’s 95-minute run time wasn’t enough to do it justice. Marji’s betrayal at the hands of a boyfriend was so quickly glossed over, you’d miss the whole damn thing if you blinked.

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David Fincher And ‘Gone Girl’ Writer Getting The Band Back Together http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-and-gone-girl-writer-getting-the-band-back-together/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-and-gone-girl-writer-getting-the-band-back-together/#comments Mon, 06 Oct 2014 20:52:22 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=265814 Expect Trent Reznor to get involved too.

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With a successful opening weekend for Gone Girl under their belt, David Fincher and writer Gillian Flynn don’t see much sense in spoiling a good thing. Fincher has brought Flynn upon his HBO remake of Utopia, based on the British series.Ben Affleck’s penis is not rumored to star.

It’s already been established that Fincher will pull a True Detective and direct every episode of the series, and now its reported that Flynn will handle the writing of each. The author quoted Fincher’s explanation of his decision, ”I don’t want a big writers room, I want a voice.” That’s good from a cohesive storytelling place, and a saving money on bagels place. (Buzzfeed)

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Review: ‘Gone Girl’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/review-gone-girl/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/review-gone-girl/#comments Sun, 05 Oct 2014 17:55:16 +0000 Jared Jones http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=265779 See it if you've read the book. See it for Affleck's dong. We don't really care why, but just go see Gone Girl.

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By Jared Jones

My mind was a mess heading into David Fincher’s Gone Girl, constantly fluctuating between extremes of fanboyish optimism and sickening trepidation. Not having read Gillian Flynn’s novel upon which the movie is based, I made a conscious effort to learn as little about the story as possible, all the while battling with my preconceived notions that the film could only play out in one of two ways: in the brooding, meticulous nature of Fincher’s 2007 procedural thriller Zodiac, or in the dull, lifeless manner of 2011′s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo remake.

And to it’s credit, Gone Girl is very much a movie that relies on building a certain level of expectation before punishing you for being so goddamn judgemental. It was the perfect project for a master of neo noir like Fincher to adapt, one that attempts to raise the murder mystery (or rather, how a murder mystery story is often told) to a higher artistic level while dialing up all the pulpy elements that make us appreciate the genre so, and actually manages to maintain its own unique identity when being held against Fincher’s more recent aforementioned works.

On the morning of his fifth anniversary, college professor and failed writer Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) finds himself at the bar (his bar, actually), tipping back glasses of bourbon with his sister (Carrie Coon) and wondering when or where his marriage to the lovely Amy (Rosamund Pike) went wrong. Through a series of flashbacks, we learn that Amy is a writer herself and something of a local legend, having been the inspiration behind a series of heralded childrens books. Nick, on the other hand, is a corn fed Missourian (by his own admission) who enjoys a good reality TV marathon with a hand down his pants, Bundy style. She and Nick met at a cocktail mixer and shared an instant, seemingly unbreakable attraction to one another, which more or less equated to a lot of f*cking. “I really like you,” Amy says while Nick is going down on her. “You have a grade-A vagina” says Nick moments before proposing to her.

Between all the anniversary scavenger hunts and kinky, exhibitionist sex, it seems like Nick and Amy have it all, and it is the exploration of their early relationship (often told through a series of Amy’s journal entries) in the first half of the film that truly elevates Gone Girl above the level of most genre faire. We aren’t given a few select moments to define Nick and Amy as characters, but rather a slow, tense examination of a marriage torn apart when, to borrow a common cliche, life gets in the way. The admiration Nick and Amy once had for one another is replaced by bitter jealousy, their passion replaced by apathy, infidelity, and fear. Or so we’re led to believe.

It all comes to a head on that morning of their anniversary, when Nick returns home to find his wife missing amidst a conveniently-staged crime scene. His alienating demeanor and seemingly carefree treatment of Amy’s disappearance instantly makes him the prime target in her disappearance, with everyone from the feds to Missi Pyles’ Ellen Abbott — a sensationalist, dim-witted reporter that could not be a more obvious rip at Nancy Grace — labeling him as an incestuous sociopath who, like, totes murdered his sweet, innocent wife. Amy’s journal entries only aide in painting Nick as the cold, slowly-unraveling murderer that the evidence already has done a bang-up job of doing, and when we learn that Nick is putting it to his 20 year student on the side when he’s *not* hiding evidence from police, it’s almost impossible not to jump to the conclusion Fincher is all but cornering us into.

But then, about halfway in, Gone Girl throws away any semblance of realism it built up and dives headfirst into the public pool of Flavortown WhattheFucksville. While a less deft hand could have played up the film’s twist like a cartoonish episode of Law & Order, Fincher is somehow able to flip the switch without it feeling like a cheap cop out. In a scene straight out of Hitchcock’s Vertigo, believability is replaced by a madness that confounds you as much as it makes you want to stand up at a Yankees game and start rooting for the Sawx. Through its clever use of several genre tropes (the red herring and the unreliable narrator chief among them), Gone Girl presents its story as it wants us to understand it, and then, like an episode of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, it strips back the veneer to reveal the world in all of its drunken, hamfisted glory. And it is glorious.

To discuss Gone Girl any further would be entering into spoiler territory, but I will say that, at two and a half hours, it never overstays its welcome. Gone Girl is easily Fincher’s warmest film to date, in both its palette and oddly enough, it’s reliance on dark humor. Seriously, the screener I went to had the audience in stitches, to the point that I wasn’t sure whether they were laughing to break the film’s suffocating tension or because the lighter moments were actually that funny. In any case, Gone Girl is a gorgeously-cinematographed, ridiculously entertaining experience that makes for one of Fincher’s finest efforts to date.

Grade: A

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This Video Pulls Back The Curtain On David Fincher’s Subtle, Haunting Style Of Direction http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/this-video-pulls-back-the-curtain-on-david-finchers-subtle-haunting-style-of-direction/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/this-video-pulls-back-the-curtain-on-david-finchers-subtle-haunting-style-of-direction/#comments Fri, 03 Oct 2014 14:30:49 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=265737 It's not flashy...and that's the point.

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David Fincher is making critical waves yet again with today’s release of Gone Girl in theaters. While Fincher is considered one of the foremost auteurs in popular cinema today, it’s hard to pinpoint exactly what makes him both different and better than many of his peers.

There isn’t a quick and easy explanation, but if you have seven minutes to dive into this, you’ll see not just what makes the director of Fight Club and Se7en stand apart from many other so-called “gritty” directors. It’s as much about his restraint and limited use of gimmicks as it his gravitation towards strong scripts.

Without giving too much aways, you’ll learn here how Fincher uses zooms, close-ups, and composition to convey a visual message as powerful as the scripted ones.

And if you don’t like David Fincher’s work, there’s still plenty to study and learn what goes into a seemingly simple shot. Kudos to the creator, Tony Szhou, for his work here.

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You Can Add Ominous Music To Your Day By Streaming The ‘Gone Girl’ Soundtrack Right Now http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/you-can-add-ominous-music-to-your-day-by-streaming-the-gone-girl-soundtrack-right-now/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/you-can-add-ominous-music-to-your-day-by-streaming-the-gone-girl-soundtrack-right-now/#comments Thu, 25 Sep 2014 16:35:22 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=265483 Music for day care centers

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Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’ third collaboration with David Fincher is nearing release with both the Gone Girl film and its soundtrack. While the film doesn’t come out for another week or so, the good folks at NPR are streaming the entirety of the soundtrack over at their site. We had given you a song before, but NPR makes us look like cheapskates now that they have the whole album.

And we’re not even going to make a big deal about how it would be a lot cooler if it was embeddable so we don’t have to direct our precious, precious traffic to a site that has a budget made from taxes and tote bag sales. Just kidding. They’re ok people (THEY’RE NOT).

So keep doing your filing, spreadsheet assembly, or tonsillectomy, but now do it with a dark urgency that only this pair can provide.

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Get A Taste Of The Trent Reznor/Atticus Ross Soundtrack For ‘Gone Girl’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/get-a-taste-of-the-trent-reznoratticus-ross-soundtrack-for-gone-girl/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/get-a-taste-of-the-trent-reznoratticus-ross-soundtrack-for-gone-girl/#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 18:13:28 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=265332 This might surprise you, but it's...haunting and sparse. (GASP!)

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The good news: We’ve got a YouTube clip of a sample of the Trent Reznor-composed soundtrack for David Fincher’s mystery Gone Girl. The bad news: You could probably guess what it sounds like. I guess that’s not bad news per se, because the Reznor style works pretty well with Fincher’s noir components, but it’s not revolutionary or anything.

Take a listen and hear for yourself. It’s always nice ambient music, and it could take on a new life in the context of the film (it is a soundtrack after all), so let’s not get bent out of shape.

We’ll just go to our therapist and talk our way through this. Again.

 

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Allow The New Trailer For David Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ To Creep You Out A Little More http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/allow-the-new-trailer-for-david-finchers-gone-girl-to-creep-you-out-a-little-more/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/allow-the-new-trailer-for-david-finchers-gone-girl-to-creep-you-out-a-little-more/#comments Mon, 07 Jul 2014 17:33:49 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=262706 We’ve already gleaned the plot of Gone Girl from the earlier trailer: Questions surround a husband’s (Ben Affleck) involvement in the wake of his wife’s murder. It’s creepy, it’s based...

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We’ve already gleaned the plot of Gone Girl from the earlier trailer: Questions surround a husband’s (Ben Affleck) involvement in the wake of his wife’s murder. It’s creepy, it’s based on a book that supposedly has a pretty interesting twist, and it’s David Fincher, so you know you’ll be put through the ringer before it’s resolved.

However, did you know that during this whole ride, we’re going to get a dose of Neil Patrick Harris as a creepy, possible-murderer? That’s a twist in and of itself. Check out the trailer and watch America’s sweetheart completely upend his wholesome image.

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David Fincher Talks Casting Emily Ratajkowski As ‘An Alien F*ck-Doll’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-talks-casting-emily-ratajkowski-as-an-alien-fck-doll/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-talks-casting-emily-ratajkowski-as-an-alien-fck-doll/#comments Thu, 26 Jun 2014 19:11:52 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=262575 He means it as a compliment.

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David Fincher has shed some light on his left field casting of Emily Ratajkowski as Ben Affleck’s young mistress in Gone Girl. The character, as described in the novel is, “an alien fuck-doll of a girl… as different from my elegant, patrician wife as could be.” Fincher was looking for someone that women would hate and men would love, but Jennifer Love Hewitt was too old for the part so…

“I was talking with Ben [Affleck], and what I wanted for the Andie role was someone who could be incredibly divisive among men and women in the audience,” Fincher told GQ. “We needed somebody where, at the moment she appears, the women are going, ‘That is unconscionable and despicable.’ And you also have the men going, ‘Yes, but…’ And so Ben said, ‘Yeah, like the girl in the ‘Blurred Lines’ video.’ ”

Well done. That is a perfect display of Ben Affleck’s penis and Ben Affleck’s mouth working well in congress with one another. It’s called TEAMwork.

 

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‘Gone Girl’ Trailer: Did Batman Kill His Wife? http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/gone-girl-trailer-did-batman-kill-his-wife/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/video/gone-girl-trailer-did-batman-kill-his-wife/#comments Tue, 15 Apr 2014 15:37:58 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?post_type=video&p=261067 Tyler Perry shows up for some reason.

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He might be out of work at the moment but at least David Fincher has a résumé now made stronger by this first trailer for Gone Girl. Based on the bestseller novel of the same name, the story centers on Ben Affleck as a husband presumed guilty of murdering his wife after she vanishes on their fifth wedding anniversary. Author Gillian Flynn stayed involved with the project by handling scripting and including an ending different than that in the book. The cops walking around in fields and searching for a body a la the Janie’s Got A Gun video is all Fincher. As is the weird cover of Elvis Costello’s “She.” Is that Kermit singing?

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Trent Reznor And David Fincher Get The Band Back Together To Score ‘Gone Girl’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/trent-reznor-and-david-fincher-get-the-band-back-together-to-score-gone-girl/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/trent-reznor-and-david-fincher-get-the-band-back-together-to-score-gone-girl/#comments Tue, 21 Jan 2014 21:50:51 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=258858 The opening credits are going to be the best part.

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By the band, I don’t mean Nine Inch Nails. I meant the Trent Reznor scoring David Fincher movies partnership will continue with Gone Girl, which means the opening credits will be really cool. Reznor will be joined by co-composer Atticus Ross to put a whole lot of whirrs and ghirrs under the images of Ben Affleck not knowing where the hell his wife is. And maybe, for a change of pace, hand claps and duck quacks? Just please think on it. (The Playlist)

 

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David Fincher Pulls A Michael Bay, Casts ‘Blurred Lines’ Model In ‘Gone Girl’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-pulls-a-michael-bay-casts-blurred-lines-model-in-gone-girl/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/david-fincher-pulls-a-michael-bay-casts-blurred-lines-model-in-gone-girl/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 12:03:45 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=257025 Classic Bay.

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For years, Michael Bay has been accused of ripping off David Fincher’s visual style. Now, those roles are reversed as Fincher casts 2013′s most buzzworthy model in his adaptation of Gone Girl. Emily Ratajkowski broke out this summer after standing around naked in the music video for Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.” So much so that she is now being cast in roles that don’t require her to rub Carl’s Jr. all over her body.

Ratajkowski will play Andie, the coed with whom Ben Affleck‘s Nick Dunne is having an affair. When his wife goes missing, he must keep this relationship under wraps to avoid implications of guilt. Let’s hope that Fincher can resist the urge to copy Armageddon’s animal crackers scene. (The Wrap)

 

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‘Gone Girl’ Casting Is Getting Weird http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/gone-girl-casting-is-getting-weird/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/gone-girl-casting-is-getting-weird/#comments Fri, 26 Jul 2013 15:59:34 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=256063 Super weird.

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David Fincher got his wish and was able to cast his first pick for the lead role of Amy Dunne, Rosamund Pike. She’s a phenomenal choice for the role that almost seems tailor-made for her yet she’s also an unconventional choice. It’s very cool and kudos to Fincher on his vision. But, the man must be stopped.

Beyond Pike, it’s now being reported that Fincher wants Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry to join the film in unspecified roles. If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say that Harris is up for the role of Desi, a former-paramour of Amy’s, and Perry is up for… sassy black maid? Honestly, Perry is the toughest piece in this puzzle. I hope that Fincher isn’t considering him for the role of the slick lawyer hired to skew the media to help Ben Affleck‘s Nick repair his damaged image. Because that role should go to this guy:

But I suppose that’s why David Fincher’s job is being David Fincher while mine is writing about David Fincher. (THR)

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Ben Affleck To Play A Maybe-Murderer In David Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/ben-affleck-to-play-a-maybe-murderer-in-david-finchers-gone-girl/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/ben-affleck-to-play-a-maybe-murderer-in-david-finchers-gone-girl/#comments Thu, 11 Jul 2013 20:15:03 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=255739 Are these the eyes of a killer?

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Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl was last summer’s most exciting page-turner so it was no surprise it would wind up on the big screen. However, it was originally expected to be a Reese Witherspoon film but then David Fincher got involved. Now it’s picking up some heat as Fincher has selected Ben Affleck to play the film’s lead, likable-ish maybe-murderer Nick Dunne.

The story centers around a man whose wife goes missing on their fifth wedding anniversary. All clues point to his being guilty as his story and the info in his wife’s diary (told via flashback) don’t match up. And then, things get super crazy. Charlize Theron, Natalie Portman, and Emily Blunt are being looked at to play Amy Dunne. What do you think of this casting? Can you see Affleck playing someone capable of killing? We already certainly know that he can murder a cheeseburger.

(Deadline)

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