In the Works: Miyazaki, Lee, and More

“The last we heard of Hayao Miyazaki’s new movie, pre-production was beginning as Studio Ghibli reopened its doors in August,” writes Zack Sharf at IndieWire. We don’t yet know much about the feature slated for a 2020 release other than what producer Toshio Suzuki said on Japanese television the other night: “Miyazaki is making the new film for his grandson. It’s his way of saying, ‘Grandpa is moving on to the next world, but he’s leaving behind this film.’” Meantime, Mike Hale has ranked all the films from Studio Ghibli for the New York Times.

Adam Driver has joined the cast of Spike Lee’s Black Klansman, reports Anthony D’Alessandro for Deadline. “Driver will play Flip, a Jewish undercover police officer who is the best of the Colorado Springs police force.” John David Washington takes the lead as Detective Ron Stallworth, “who dared to challenge the Ku Klux Klan and thwart its attempts to take over the city.”

The photographer Gregory Crewdson, the subject of Ben Shapiro’s 2012 documentary, Gregory Crewdson: Brief Encounters, is making his directorial debut with Reflective Light, and Scarlett Johansson is “in early talks” to star in it, reports Variety’s Justin Kroll. “The pic follows a teenage boy who suffers from a malady that makes him gravely allergic to sunlight. If Johansson’s deal goes through, she would play his mother, so devoted to her son’s care that she has alienated the rest of their family, creating an oddly sustainable nocturnal lifestyle for him at the expense of her own well-being. When a neighborhood girl goes missing, the balance that kept them afloat begins to unravel.”

Ryan Murphy (American Crime Story,Feud) has a new drama lined up at FX, Pose, “a period piece set in the mid-’80s in New York City, examining the juxtaposition of several segments of life and society in Manhattan: the emergence of the luxury Trump-era universe, the ball culture world, and downtown social and literary scene.” That’s from Daniel Holloway in Variety, where he notes that Pose has cast “the highest number of transgender series regulars ever for a scripted television show.”

Screen’s Melanie Goodfellow reports on the projects that French distributor Wild Bunch will be shopping at the American Film Market:

  • The animated feature Foxy Trotter, about “the psychedelic adventures of talented rock photographer,” produced by Natalie Portman
  • Ari Folman’s Where Is Anne Frank?, an animated “adaptation of the eponymous, best-selling graphic novel he created with long-time collaborator David Polonsky”
  • Pablo Trapero’s La Quietud with Bérénice Bejo, Edgar Ramirez, and Martina Gusman
  • Régis Roinsard’s The Translators with Lambert Wilson, Olga Kurylenko, and Sidse Babett Knudsen

Goodfellow: “Wild Bunch will continue sales on Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire’s previously-announced Addicted to Violence, Philippe Godeau’s Omar Sy-starrer Racine (previously titled YAO), which is in pre-production; Claire Denis’s High Life, which wraps shooting this month; Lorenzo Mattotti’s The Bears’ Invasion of Sicily and Bi Gan’s Long Day’s Journey Into Night, which are also in production, and Brian Welsh’s Beats, which is in post-production.”

Mia Wasikowska will star in Mirrah Foulkes’s feature debut, Judy and Punch, reports Laura Berger at Women and Hollywood. “Described by Foulkes as ‘a crazy mix of fantasy, feminism, and fanaticism,’ the film is set in the fictional town of Seaside, and according to its press release, ‘follows two puppeteers—the vain but charismatic Punch and his resilient and talented wife Judy—as they attempt to resurrect their show as a means of escaping their decrepit town.’ The project is said to be ‘coarse and brutal, bubbling with violence, misogyny, and magic.’”

Shawn Ku, “winner of the TIFF FIPRESCI Discovery Award for his debut feature Beautiful Boy [2010],” will direct Nicolas Cage in the action thriller A Score to Settle, reports the Tracking Board.

Bloody Disgusting’s Brad Miska has word that Rob Zombie is bringing back The Devil’s Rejects, possibly as a prequel to the 2005 film, itself “a spinoff of his directorial debut, House of 1,000 Corpses (2003).”

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