Film News

'The King' finds a throne, Hanks finds another Wilson, and where you'll find time to help Marian Yeager; plus, Sandra Bullock should stay closer to home

'King' Enthroned: Gael García Bernal starrer The King, which shot in Austin and Corpus Christi, has been picked up by red-hot indie distributor THINKFilm. Look for it to hit theatres early next year. The revenge picture, written by Milo Addica (Monster's Ball) and director James Marsh, stars Bernal as a man who seeks revenge on the preacher father he never knew (William Hurt) and the preacher's entire family, and already has garnered mixed reviews for its unblinking brutality. Todd McCarthy of Variety termed it a "noxious film morally," while Ray Bennett of The Hollywood Reporter praised the acting and photography, saying "it's as pretty as a candy box but contains only poison." THINKFilm recently cut a deal to partner with Lions Gate, and has two buzz documentaries from the recent South by Southwest Film Festival in its stable: wheelchair rugby story Murderball and The Aristocrats. The company seems to gravitate toward controversy, particularly in the case of The Aristocrats, with AMC Theatres recently opting not to screen Paul Provenza and Penn Jillette's documentary featuring the nation's top comics telling different versions of the same ultra-raunchy joke. AMC is the nation's second-largest chain, with about 3,500 theatres nationwide.

Hanks Banks 'Wilson's War': Tom Hanks will star as Texas congressman Charles Wilson in Charlie Wilson's War, which is expected to lens in the spring. The story, told in George Crile's 2003 book of the same name, focuses on the colorful Wilson, whose exploits include being caught boozing it up in a hot tub with Las Vegas showgirls and orchestrating a secret operation to fund Afghanistan forces opposing the Soviet Union in the early 1980s. The West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin wrote the script. No word on whether any portions will be filmed in Texas.

It's a Date: A benefit for Marian Yeager's Blue Suede Wings, which will shoot in Austin in September, is set for 5-9pm, Aug. 3, at Spider House, 2908 Fruth, with live music, a raffle, and silent auction… Don't forget to send your under-15-minute film to the Flicker folk ASAP. There is no entry fee for the August 25 fest at the Alamo Drafthouse Downtown. More at

And the Rest: Andrew Shapter gave a sneak peak at raw footage from his in-progress doc Before the Music Dies, which takes aim at corporate rock and radio. With interviews and songs by heavy-hitters like Eric Clapton and Dave Matthews, it's got me salivating for more. Oh, and he says John Cusack and Laurence Fishburne are possibilities for narrator… Add author to Robert Rodriguez's long résumé. You can buy Frank Miller's Sin City: The Making of the Movie at for $30 and get as a bonus Mexican Spaghetti Western, the rocking debut CD from RR's naughtily named band, Chingon. Or snap up a series of young adult books based on The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D as written by Chris Roberson and the film's conceptual designer Alex Toader… Dear newlywed Sandra Bullock, need a reason to shoot all your films in Austin? Capital City-shot Miss Congeniality grossed $212 million four years ago, but your Las Vegas-lensed sequel won't make half that, including both domestic and foreign. Maybe this bodes well for your Central Texas-shot Truman Capote biopic, which recently changed its name to Have You Heard? from the original Every Word Is True. Where should we send the wedding gifts?

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Gael Garcia Bernal, Tom Hanks, Charlie Wilson's War, Aaron Sorkin, Marian Yeager, Blue Suede Wings, The King, ThinkFilm, Fantastic Fest, Have You Heard?

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