*** Official THE STEPFORD WIVES Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Nicholas Vargo, May 3, 2004.

  1. Nicholas Vargo

    Nicholas Vargo Second Unit

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    I saw the teaser and was really impressed, and over the weekend, i saw the final trailer and I'm blown away. I can't wait to see it. Especially since it's from the same director and writer of "In & Out", Frank Oz and Paul Rudnick.

    The release date is June 11.

    Anyone else looking forward to it?
     
  2. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    I saw the trailer a couple weeks ago. I'm not sure how I feel about it. Obviously the 1960s era feminist themes of the original wouldn't work for today, but the trailer made the film look more like a farce than a dark comedy (as I've read it described in other places). I have liked Oz's work, so I'll probably check it out.
     
  3. Kevin Leonard

    Kevin Leonard Supporting Actor

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    I'll see it; since it looks like they're avoiding the more serious tone of the original version, the remake's dark comedy feel seems more suited to Oz's style.

    But, with stories of delayed production, bad test screenings, shifting release dates and quite a few reshoots (not to mention Christopher Walken and Bette Midler reportedly not getting along), my enthusiasm has wavered a bit. But I'll still be there, as it's a rare opportunity to see Nicole Kidman in a full-on comedy--and let's not forget that this movie has a pretty stellar supporting cast.
     
  4. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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    I'm not really jazzed for this one, but I'll be there if only for the superb cast.
     
  5. MattGentry

    MattGentry Second Unit

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    Yeah, I finally saw the trailer for it, and I've got to say, it left me severely underwhelmed.

    Probably doesn't help that I can't stand Bette Midler...
     
  6. Mark Edward Heuck

    Mark Edward Heuck Screenwriter

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    I think there was a good opportunity for a new interpretation of THE STEPFORD WIVES.

    This one ain't it.

    The satire looks extremely obvious and over the top, the performances garish, and frankly, Paul Rudnick is just not that funny a writer. The "Libby Gelman-Waxner" columns are inconsistent, and for every IN & OUT there are too many MARCI X's.

    The original may seem dated, but it at least built the creepiness properly and subtly. Sure, the long flowery dresses may as well be, as Stephen King said, like a sticker saying "I AM ONE OF THE WEIRD STEPFORD WIVES," but women I spoke to who lived in the era said those were indeed in fashion, so it's not unreasonable to initially dismiss, as the original characters did, that mode of dress as a bad omen. Compare that to the "funny" clip of the wives doing aerobics in heels in the remake: implausible even by comedy standards.

    I will likely see it, but my hopes are dim.
     
  7. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    This thread is now designated the Official Discussion Thread for "The Stepford Wives" please, post all comments, links to outside reviews, film and box office discussion items to this thread.

    All HTF member film reviews of "The Stepford Wives" should be posted to the Official Review Thread.

    Thank you for your consideration in this matter.


    Crawdaddy
     
  8. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    No interest here. Put this down in the 'Why did they bother category'.
     
  9. Mikel_Cooperman

    Mikel_Cooperman Producer

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    I read this yesterday which sounds like a disaster in the making. I never thought they should have remade it in the first place but was a bit curious. I will stay away for good now.

    My question is, didnt they have a script that everyone agreed on Before the filming started??



    Revealing the "Stepford" Problem
    Posted: Sunday June 6th, 2004 8:25pm (Au-EST)


    The New York Post has written a fascinating article on the assorted problems which plagued the production of this week's all-star remake of the classic "The Stepford Wives". The Paramount-distributed black comedy when put into production in New York last year, was all tipped to be a big Summer movie hit for the studio with an all-star cast signing up for roles in what was expected to be a breezy three month shoot.

    Then problems sprang up. Kidman complained about the script, and then the floodgates sprang open when the assorted stars started pushing their egos. According to one source - "Fourteen different people were saying what they wanted, and no one was willing to blink. That's why a shoot that was supposed to take three months wound up taking eight...There were too many cooks"

    Seems that every major player had an opinion about how the movie should go. Some wanted " a manic satire of the suburbs; others wanted a sci-fi thriller like the original "Stepford"; and there seems to have been a contingent that insisted on adding schmaltzy redemption scenes at the end".

    Director Frank Oz tried to pull it all together but got into screaming matches with star Christopher Walken who reportedly threatened to quit more than once. For Kidman it ended up being the second longest shoot of her career behind "Eyes Wide Shut". The ballroom finale scene ended up shooting for a month - two weeks with one ending, two weeks with another. Then the studio came back and weren't happy, so Oz stormed off set. He came back in December and continued working on the project. As recently as last month there were reshoots done for the ending. Producer Scott Rudin is believed to have essentially abandoned the project.

    So the behind-the-scenes was a horror, will that affect the final product? Various films have proven to be big hits and critical successes despite painful births. The early verdict on the film though remains to be seen - tonight's LA premiere and Tuesday's media screenings in New York will be the first time the film has been screened outside the studio. By next weekend, the results will be in.
     
  10. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    'Stepford Wives' Ad Shows Hillary, Condoleezza In Strange Light

    "KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Some people are saying the way Hillary Clinton and Condoleezza Rice are portrayed in an ad for the new "Stepford Wives" film is distasteful, even outrageous.

    The spot shows an image of Rice made to look nude from the waist up, and a picture of Clinton that morphs into what looks like a cookie-baking Stepford wife.

    The pictures move across the screen very quickly, but they caught the eye of a Kansas City woman, who recorded the spot to make sure of what she was seeing.

    Becky Reynolds said when she taped and watched the ad again, she "realized it was even worse" that what she'd suspected.

    "It's just inappropriate, and it needs to be stopped," Reynolds said.

    For those who haven't seen the 1975 thriller by director Bryan Forbes, the 2004 version is pretty much the same, but with a dash of technical wizardry. Both films are based on a book by Ira Levin about a small Connecticut town where the women act too perfectly -- because their husbands have replaced them with robots.

    But Reynolds says the less-than-perfect images in the advertisement for the new film will keep her out of the theater. Pat Gray, who works with Northstar Marketing Group, said the ad shows bad taste toward Rice and Clinton.

    "In today's media environment, I don't know whether it's unacceptable morally or not -- distasteful, for sure," Gray said. "If I were them, I'd probably sue."

    Gray also said the ad wouldn't drive him to the theater.

    "That certainly wouldn't stimulate me to go see the movie," he said.

    Nancy Kirkpatrick, a spokeswoman for Paramount Pictures, said the film studio hasn't received any complaints about the spot. Paramount hasn't heard from Rice or Clinton, either."

    -----------

    Here's an excerpt from the new Stepford Wives marketing campaign:

    [​IMG]

    Stepford-Condoleeza Rice and Stepford-Hillary Clinton are hot (wink). [​IMG]
     
  11. Ricky Cash

    Ricky Cash Agent

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    Do people really let the press stories about so called "problems" during production stop them from enjoying a movie. I mean being that the entertainment press has even less credibility than the real press. Why not just let the movie come out, figure if you like that type movie, and give it a chance. The TV spots for this move tell me it has my kind of subject matter. I will see it on dvd in due time, as I do all my movies.
     
  12. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    Titanic was a nightmare production, Walt Disney threw out six months of work on Pinocchio and started all over again, David Lean confessed he felt "tortured" during the filming of Lawrence of Arabia because of the doubting Thomases on all sides -- these films are recognized as high points in their respective careers.

    There is no triumph without struggle. I'll be blunt -- audiences should expect their artists to fight. In fact, audiences should get EXCITED when they hear a filmmaker is bucking the odds and trying to adhere to their visions.
     
  13. Justin_S

    Justin_S Producer

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    I don't think this looks too promising at all. The trailers annoy me actually. I believe I'll pass.
     
  14. Joe Karlosi

    Joe Karlosi Producer

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    Ridiculous. It seems everything has to be made into a joke today. The 1975 film does not require a comical remake.
     
  15. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Producer

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    Did anyone here actually SEE this movie? I had a question about it but I don't know if I should bother to ask it!
     
  16. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I don't have fond memories of it because it was 2 different movies with 2 different sets of Stepford wives, and used them when the plot required it.
     
  17. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Producer

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    Huh?
     
  18. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Meaning, were the Stepford wives robots, or brain-washed human women? The film shows both.
     
  19. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Producer

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    Got it. That was what my question dealt with - my confusion about that inconsistency. Usually we see them as robots, but the educational film used by the Chris Walken character shows them as the real women with microchip implants. The ending only makes sense with the latter explanation, but how do we reconcile it with the robotic Nicole Kidman in one scene and another character spitting out money like an ATM?



    I'm working through the DVD - Oz offers no clarification/explanation/justification/apology for all this in his commentary. IS there any explanation other than they just messed up really badly?



    (I enjoyed much of the movie otherwise - the last act flops, but the first two-thirds is pretty good...)
     
  20. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    My guess - from memory, there were some extensive reshoots of the film. I suspect they were supposed to be robots initially, but that required for the original wifes to have been killed - otherwise, where are they. So they did reshoots in which they became brainwashed computer-chipped women. That basically just required changes to the ending and a few odd scenes in the rest of the film where they discuss the plan. But they then forgot to omit scenes like the ATM wife that clearly indicate a robot.
     

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