Ben Affleck is working with trainer Rehan Jalali to get into Batman shape. Jalali previously helped Affleck get pumped up in 2010?s The Town. With Batman vs. Superman scheduled to begin shooting next month, Jalali took to Twitter to give fans an update on Affleck’s training:
Quick Update: Met up w/Batman and Operation Biggest/Leanest/Baddest Batman Eva is on schedule! #DarkKnight
— Rehan Jalali (@SixPackDietPlan) March 12, 2014
The best of 2013 is already in our rear view, so now let’s start looking forward to 2014. One of the most anticipated releases of this year will be Gone Girl, David Fincher’s adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s popular 2012 novel. The thriller is the perfect material for the director, who has made stylish crime dramas like Zodiac and Seven. This is right up his alley.
For those who haven’t read the novel, it focuses on Nick Dunne, a journalist who just lost his job, and his wife, Amy. The couple now live in Carthage, Missouri, where Nick grew up and bought a bar with his sister, Margot. On their fifth wedding anniversary, Amy goes missing and everyone starts getting suspicious of Nick’s actions. But in Flynn’s world, nothing is as it seems and the second half of the novel has a surprising twist that no one should see coming.
While the book seems at first like a tough one to bring to the screen, as it moves along, one can see the influence of film noir and crime films on Flynn’s writing. Flynn is actually writing writing the screenplay and, as the creator of this dark world, she has every right to make some changes. In fact, she told Entertainment Weekly (her old employer) that she’s changing the last act.
She said that when star Ben Affleck read the script, he was surprised, notes Time. “He would say, ‘This is a whole new third act! She literally threw that third act out and started from scratch,’” Flynn recalled.
Affleck will star as Nick, while Rosamund Pike has been cast as Amy. Pike is a relative unknown, although she’s been in Jack Reacher, Pride & Prejudice and An Education. This role will surely raise her profile considerably, as Amy proves to be more than what we think she is.
The rest of the cast is intriguing. Neil Patrick Harris will be Desi Collings, one creepy character. He recently told Out that Fincher had him and Pike rehearse every moment of a sex scene. Fincher “wanted it to be almost robotic, that we know exactly where we are, position-wise, where everything goes,” he said. “And yet, through all of that, the whole ‘I’m gay’ element was never even thought about.”
Probably the most interesting casting choice is Tyler Perry as Tanner Bolt, the lawyer Nick hires when things get really bad for him. Fincher will make it work, but it is an interesting twist on the character, who was so self-absorbed. He’s a man who appears to have every word scripted out in his head before he says it. We’ll see how Perry can deliver on that.
For Fincher, Gone Girl will be the latest in a series of films based on books, going back to The Social Network. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo was based on one of the most popular novels ever written and that turned out great. Hopefully, Gone Girl does better with audiences.
The film hits theaters on Oct. 3. We haven’t seen an image since December and we can only wait for the trailer
Yano and his guest partied with Ben & Matt in an all day poker tournament in Hollywood! Definitely the start of a beautiful best friendship.
— Omaze (@omaze) February 21, 2014
The new Batman appeared on NPR to discuss his stance on Africa
Even Batman deals with confidence issues.
Ben Affleck, who testified last week before Congress on behalf of the Congo, revealed to NPR’s Morning Edition’s David Greene on Thursday that he briefly struggled with feelings of insecurity before stepping up as a celebrity advocate for the region.
“It seemed to me that what I had to offer at the time could be better used in the Congo and after that, in my sort of insecurity about not wanting to be somebody who does it without understanding it, led me to go,” Affleck explained.
While Affleck’s Hollywood friends pushed the “Batman vs. Superman” star toward other causes, he was ultimately able to use his clout to draw more attention to the often-ignored region.
“Being an actor afforded me [certain] access,” Affleck began, “and the more I got involved and looked around in the Congo, the more I was drawn there. Not because of the suffering but because of the will and the energy and the determination of the Congolese people and the face of that suffering to overcome.”
Despite his initial doubts, Affleck made sure he was able to contribute more than just a celebrity mouthpiece.
“I wouldn’t be a credible advocate if I wasn’t taken seriously, if I hadn’t done my homework,” Affleck revealed. “So in order to do it, I had to do it properly.”
Listen to more of Affleck’s NPR interview below:
Zach Snyder spoke candidly with Hero Complex about keeping tabs on fanboy “talk-back” and how outcry is “reassuring and frustrating at the same time.”
Hero Complex: Have you started filming ‘Superman-Batman’?
Zack Snyder: We’re getting ready to start shooting in a month or so. It’s going great. I’m very excited. It’s very fun to get into this world with different heroes coexisting in the same universe, but a lot of balls in the air as they say. As a fan, it’s an amazing opportunity. You know, Superman and Batman in the movies have never existed in the same frame together. So it’s an interesting historical thing. We were just testing the suits, right? The new Batsuit and the Superman suit. It wasn’t even with the actors, right? It was just to see ‘em. I was standing there, they were standing next to each other. And I was like, “Guys, someone take a picture! This has never happened before.” We slightly dork out. Like, “Are you kidding me?!”
HC: How surprised are you by all the outcry over some of your casting choices? From Gal Gadot to Ben playing Batman? Jesse as Lex Luthor?
ZS: There are two ways to think about it. We know the material. Unfortunately, the fans don’t know the material. So, we’re casting according to what’s happening in the script. And we’re hoping that leads to enough originality, enough perspective on what we’re doing that you get something fresh and exciting. I understand the canon. I’m not crazy. I know what these characters need from a mythological standpoint. I think Jesse is going to be an amazing Lex. Let’s not forget he was nominated for an Academy Award. It’s not like I just grabbed my friend to play the guy! This guy’s the real deal. By the way, in looking at all the talk-back, you can get all different perspectives in there too. Some people are hating to hate. Some people — someone did some fan art. And you look underneath and someone wrote, “I guess I can see it.” Honestly, are you kidding me? Just stop it! It’s reassuring and frustrating at the same time.
HC: It seems like you’re not insulating yourself from fan dialogue about the project. You’re out there listening to what people have to say. But ultimately, you are trying to serve the material. So what you’re saying is, fans should take heart in that.
ZS: Not just that. [The movie] literally takes the “Man of Steel” and “Batman” universes and explodes them. You’re not as tied to the mythology. In “Man of Steel,” we had to create an origin story, a mythology, and there’s a lot of energy into that, which we love doing. Don’t get me wrong. But when you think about how fun it is too — now that you’ve got these characters — to now let ‘em loose. That’s fun!
(NEW YORK) — On ABC’s This Week on Sunday morning, Ben Affleck told Martha Raddatz that working in the Congo has given meaning to his life.
The Oscar award-winning actor and director said he worried about his legacy. Looking at his life, he thought, “I haven’t really done anything substantial, aside from my work, and that I can look back on and say I contributed to society in a way that was commensurate with the blessings that I have.”
Then he traveled to the Congo and has been back nine times since 2006.
Of all the Hollywood stars that use their celebrity to focus camera on a favorite cause, Affleck is one of the most well-respected. His organization, Eastern Congo Initiative, supports local Congolese development organizations working on a range of issues from women’s health to peace and justice, and he has been invited to speak Capitol Hill repeatedly regarding the conditions in the country. This week, the actor joined US Special Envoy to the Congo, Russ Feingold, in Washington, to meet with Secretary of State John Kerry and testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
“He’s really a model for the way the United States needs to approach this,” Feingold said. “Somebody can get interested in this, do it for a few months, get some credit and quit. He hasn’t done that. He’s given it sustained attention.”
For nearly 15 years, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has been embroiled in conflict. More than five million people have died in the DRC from violence and, according to the UN human rights organization, three million Congolese were still displaced from their homes last year.
Affleck said these numbers can be overwhelming. “It’s not that people don’t care about Africa or terrible crises like this, but it’s like you don’t want to hear about it, it’s so vile,” he said. “How many millions of people? I can’t even understand that.”
“It really struck me, you know, why is this child’s life worth any less than my own children’s? Why is this woman’s life worth any less than my — my own wife?” he continued.
Affleck said he understood American’s hesitation to get involved overseas, but that helping fellow human beings is part of our nation’s core values.
“This is who we are as Americans. We believe in helping others who are down, who are suffering, who are being exploited,” he said.
“We believe in helping our neighbor. We believe in helping them achieve democracy and freedom. And in this case, it’s not democracy at the point of a gun. It’s — it’s a democracy assisted by diplomats, by people who want to work with their government to make their lives better,” he continued.
Conditions on the ground in the DRC are improving. A major rebel group surrendered last November and a special all-Africa United Nations-led peacekeeping team has had success reducing the violence. Still, Feingold and Affleck agreed the Obama administration should continue to make the region a priority and place pressure on the young Congolese government to hold elections and reform its security forces.
“My greatest worry is that people will think just because something happened positively that it’s done. Sometimes we have a tendency to be like that. We have much more to do, both in the region and within the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to stop this and to give the people of that country what they deserve, an opportunity to benefit from their culture and their resources.”
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio