Any word on FRIDA?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Vickie_M, May 11, 2002.

  1. Vickie_M

    Vickie_M Producer

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    I've heard September and October release dates, and I have no idea which, if either, is correct. Does anyone know?
    I've been looking forward to this film for so long. I really, REALLY want it to be good. I've been a fan of Frida Kahlo's art for a couple of decades, and I knew that her story would make for an amazing film. The idea of a movie was bounced around for quite a few years, among lots of different people (including Madonna, who is a major Kahlo collector), and I was always getting my hopes up then having them dashed down when a project would fall through.
    I was happy to hear that it was FINALLY being made, although I'm not the biggest fan of Salma Hayek. I think Jennifer Lopez had wanted to do a Kahlo picture, and she's a much better actress, IMHO. I'm hoping Salma has the talent to make Frida come alive on film, without making her out to be either a saint or a bitch. Above all else, Frida was a woman in PAIN. Literally, excruciating, physical pain, every minute of every hour of every day. Yet she did all these amazing paintings (mainly self-portraits), and she loved and laughed and had a fascinating life through it all. Salma had a pretty big weight to carry by playing Frida.
    I AM VERY HAPPY that it was co-written by Gregory Nava (El Norte, Mi Familia) and Rodrigo García (Things You Can Tell Just By Looking At Her), and it's directed by Julie Taymor (Titus). I have very high hopes for this film. Even if the movie doesn't work, damn, it'll sound and LOOK amazing!
    Now if it would just come out already! I'm so impatient for films I want to see.
     
  2. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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    I'd heard that there were some big dustups between the studio and Taymor, but I dunno if that's true or just standard-issue studio bullshit. When a film's not focus-grouping well (which is certainly possible in this instance given the director and subject matter), the studios tend to start scapegoating and making excuses for not getting behind it (distribution, advertising, etc.).

    Though I think its idiotic to cast either of Hollywood's two most scrumptious babes in the role of Kahlo, I think Hayak could be made to more closely resemble her. One wonders if the boneheads who greenlight these productions thought they were getting some Lopez/Hayak glamour vehicle with ridiculous gowns, vapors, and endless pining about "suffering for my art... and Diego".

    I'd love to see it - and Taymor and Nava's attachment is very interesting - but you just gotta wonder whether a Hollywood studio production can do this story justice. I'd be more excited if it was a low-budget, Mexican production (say, directed by Alfonso Cuarón!).
     
  3. Vickie_M

    Vickie_M Producer

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    I just read that Frida is being shown at the Venice Film Festival. As far as I know, it will be the first public showing.
    The Hours is being shown in Venice too. I wish I were there.
     
  4. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    In the morning I'll check the release schedule I have at work. Off the top of my head, the date that comes to mind is October 11, but I would take that with a grain of salt.

    There was quite the squabble in print about the editing process and studio exec interference. Three guesses which studio is releasing it. (You're right if you said Miramax.)
     
  5. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Cinematographer

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  6. Guy Martin

    Guy Martin Second Unit

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    Today's Hollywood Reporter says that the US release date is October 25 in LA and NY, presumably opening elsewhere in the following weeks.

    - Guy
     
  7. John Berggren

    John Berggren Producer

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    Titus was an extraordinary surprise for me when I got the DVD. It made me an instant fan of Julie Taymor. I do hope she returns to Shakespeare again, but I definitely want to see Frida.

    Since I live in NC, I'm sure I won't see this one until DVD either though.
     
  8. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    The list I was sent Monday still has the October 11 date, but it appears to be incorrect now. (Solaris has been bumped up, for instance.)
     
  9. Vickie_M

    Vickie_M Producer

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    Oh, I'm VERY HAPPY! Frida opened the Venice Film Festival and got a standing ovation, according to Yahoo News.
    The only review I've read so far is at AICN, and it's a goodie (and particularly wonderful to me because he also positively reviews another movie I've been dying to see, The Magdalene Sisters).
    Wheee!
     
  10. Vlad D

    Vlad D Screenwriter

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  11. Vlad D

    Vlad D Screenwriter

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  12. Thi Them

    Thi Them Producer

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    Does anyone know why Ed Norton isn't credited as a writer? I saw Salma Hayek on Charlie Rose, and she said that he was the most important writer for the movie, having wrote 7 drafts and being the only to collaborate with Julie Taymor.

    ~T
     
  13. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    I believe that was the decision of a Writer's Guild arbitration, but I can't remember where I read this.

    M.
     
  14. Quentin

    Quentin Cinematographer

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    Some answers and opinions....

    I don't think Hayek is a dead ringer for Kahlo. She's far more attractive, especially topless. That's one problem for a film with a few.

    Another BIG problem is that Hayek doesn't have the command of the screen (except for sexually) or anywhere close to the acting range necessary for this role. I like her. I'm hot for her. I applaud her for getting this film made and for trying hard to pull off the part. But, I don't think she succeeds.

    Ed Norton didn't get credit because he lost an arbitration, that by all things I hear, he probably should have lost.

    Mollina is great.

    The movie is alright, but will soon be forgotten...unless they stage a BIG Oscar campaign for Hayek. It's a competitive year for Best Actress, so I imagine she'll be left out.
     
  15. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    Its in limited release now and like Punch Drunk Love will probally go wider as weeks pass by.Although the temptation to see this is really bad, Ill probally wait until Home video for it.
    Heres my fav critics review
    http://movie-reviews.colossus.net/movies/f/frida.html
     
  16. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    Saw it last night. Someone really should make a movie about Frida Kahlo.

    Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it, but mostly because Julie Taymor is really good with the eye candy - Frida looks just as amazing as Titus did, and Taymor integrates Ms. Kahlo's art into the visuals in various clever ways, even enlisting the Brothers Quay for one instance. Alfred Molina is so good that you could argue that the movie should properly be titled Frida And Diego. And despite a few gratuitous cameos (Antonio Banderas, Edward Norton), the acting is strong throughout. Just one problem.

    Frida doesn't do anything. Things just seem to happen around her. It also doesn't help that we are told she's a cripple, but she seems fairly able-bodied through msot of the movie. But the big problem is that Frida is overpowered by the other characters in the movie; I'm not sure whether that's the fault of Hayek or the script, but it's a huge issue that nearly sinks the movie.
     
  17. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    My short review is here with several other quick takes.
    Shorter version: What Jason Seaver said (with a stress on "nearly sinks the movie" -- because the movie doesn't sink; the audience I saw it with broke out in spontaneous applause).
    M.
     
  18. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    The Dallas Morning News gave this a rave review. My wife and I expect to see it soon.
     
  19. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    I saw Frida yesterday and I'm pretty much with Jason on it. I really liked the movie, but there's something missing. I don't even know what that 'something' is, but to use a recent example - whatever it is that Pollack had that so completely communicated the essence of his art is not there in Frida.
    Jason touched on the biggest problem - for the whole middle section of the film there is no sense of Frida being in physical pain or even being a cripple. Only minutes after she makes that painful walk across the courtyard to her parents, we see her dancing the tango with Ashley Judd. Since pain was one of the primary drivers of her art the lack of attention to it for over an hour of screen time seems odd.
    Alfred Molina is a force of nature in this film. He seems a lock for an Oscar nomination. Indeed, if I were voting today (admittedly with a lot of contenders unseen) I'd give the statue to him. He's that good. And there's the film's other big problem - he overpowers Hayek at every turn. Jason suggests the film should have been called Frida And Diego. I agree, except I'd call it Diego And Frida.
    Despite this, I can easily recommend Frida. It's an exciting film to watch - the 2 hours go by quickly. Julie Taymor proves once again that she is a brilliant visual stylist, using Kahlo's art to great effect. The soundtrack is fantastic - I just loved all of the music and it really worked well with the film. Any film-lover should find Frida worth their while.
     
  20. Edwin Pereyra

    Edwin Pereyra Producer

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    Looks like the Mexican backlash is just now coming in:

     

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