Straight up, G
When we last saw David Lynch, he had Marilyn Manson writhing as a porno star in Lost Highway. Now The Straight Story, out this October, offers Lynch’s biggest shocker yet. ”No violence. No language. No sex. G-rated,” Lynch deadpans. ”And it’s Walt Disney.” Add David Mamet’s The Winslow Boy and Wim Wenders’ Buena Vista Social Club, and there’s been a string of Gs from edgy auteurs lately. ”There has to be room for all different kinds of stories,” argues Lynch, whose latest is the true tale of 73-year-old Alvin Straight, who in 1994 traveled 350 miles to visit his ailing brother — on a lawn mower. ”All my films have presented a challenge,” says Lynch. ”It’s all about sound and picture moving together in time — and something in the air.” Irony, dichotomy, oddity — maybe Lynch hasn’t changed after all.
Pedro’s paper route
Spain’s Pedro Almodovar, best-director winner at the Cannes film festival for All About My Mother, is planning his first U.S. production, adapting Pete Dexter’s The Paperboy for exec producer Jan De Bont. Shooting should begin next year.
Love and money
What’s with Miramax’s renewed push for Shakespeare in Love, which recently got a Star Wars-spoofing ”Make Love, Not War!” ad boost? ”Getting over $100 million,” concedes Mark Gill, president of Miramax L.A. Harvey Weinstein’s outfit has a history of late-in-the-game drives to the nine-figure mark (see Scream and its sequel). But it’s not the extra $2.5 mil Love needs that the studio truly craves. Miramax and foreign distributor Universal have a bevy of ancillary deals that will pay hefty bonuses to both studios if U.S. BO clears $100 million. ”It also gives us a calling card with filmmakers who [might] say, ‘Maybe I should take my project to Miramax — look at what they did for Shakespeare,”’ says Gill, who swears the effort isn’t costing more than what the studio’s trying to make. There are also bragging rights, but Gill won’t cop to that. ”I don’t think there’s any vanity in the movie business. Do you?”