Paul Walker will star in Hours, a post–Hurricane Katrina thriller that will be the directorial debut of horror screenwriter Eric Heisserer (The Thing, the most recent Final Destination). Walker will play a man trying to keep his newborn daughter alive in an abandoned New Orleans hospital. Just some top-notch casting here: When you think of an actor with the expressive abilities to translate the fear and confusion that gripped the city after Katrina, of course you think Paul Walker. Grade: D [HR]
Joel and Ethan Coen are teaming up with Cedar Rapids' writer Phil Johnson on their first TV project. It's called Harve Karbo, it's an hour-long single-camera comedy about a private detective in L.A. who frequently encounters big Hollywood names while on the job, and it's got a script plus penalty commitment from Fox. The Coen Brother's famed dark humor and subtle sensibilities are going to fit in great with American Dad. Grade: A [HR]
What do Stanley Kubrick, John Huston, Sylvester Stallone, and Prince have in common? They’ve all been nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director! The Razzies have always prided themselves on nominating a mix of directors for the industry’s biggest prize. Sure, actors (Kevin Costner, Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy) who step behind the camera are always favorites. But the Razzies voters seem to enjoy taking auteurs and top-notch pros down a peg, as well; by RazzieWatch’s count, 14 directors have been nominated for the Oscar for Best Director and the Razzie for Worst Director.
Despite a premise that fused two once-reliable genres and a cast featuring both Indiana Jones and James Bond, Jon Favreau’s $163 million Cowboys & Aliens got smurfing smurfed at the box office over the weekend, opening to a measly $36.2 million — well below even the modest $45 million its makers had predicted. As Harrison Ford scrambles into the nearest refrigerator, we at Grantland are left to wonder just what happened. We asked an agent, a producer, and a publicist for insight on why C&A bombed so badly — and what the fallout might be for its makers and Hollywood at large.