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December 27, 2010 / TerranceTheTrailerTrasher

Zombies and Monsters and Chefs, Oh My!

Today I look at what’s in the pipeline for Leonardo DiCaprio, Catherine Hardwicke, David Dobkin and Jane Austen.

LIFE, ON THE LINE – Based on the memoir of Grant Achatz, one of the top-rated chefs in the world, who was diagnosed with tongue cancer. Given one month to live, he refused surgery to have his tongue removed because it would mean the loss of his sense of taste forever. He chose chemo instead. Now his cancer is in remission and he is opening a new restaurant in Chicago that will require nonrefundable tickets to be purchased online instead of taking reservations, will completely change its time-travel-themed menu every three months, and will not allow any substitutions to the food, even for dietary or allergy-related reasons. David Dobkin (WEDDING CRASHERS) is expected to direct the part artist biopic, part buddy movie.

@@@@ – I wouldn’t eat at his restaurant because I’m happy eating chicken out of a bucket. However, I appreciate the artistry of his work, even if it’s not my idea of a meal. And the guy sounds like quite a character, faced with a true dilemma, like Beethoven losing his hearing, who triumphs over adversity. I wonder if Dobkin will re-team with Vince Vaughan for this one?

THE MAZE RUNNER – Every thirty days, new teenage boys arrive in an alternate, dystopian, boys-only world. One day, a girl is thrown into the mix. Catherine Hardwicke is in talks to direct, from a trilogy of young adult novels.

@@@ – It’s not that hard to imagine what will happen when a boys-only world meets its first teenage girl. It sounds imaginative and Hardwicke seems to know how to pick young adult novels to turn into movie franchises.

LEGACY OF SECRECY – An FBI informant played by Leonardo DiCaprio goes undercover to become a confidante of Mafia godfather Carlos Marcello, who confesses to ordering the assassination of JFK. Leo’s dad brought the book to his attention, so he gets a producer credit. They’re aiming for a 2013 release to exploit the 50th anniversary of the assassination.

@@ – Mafia stories rarely interest me. Oliver Stone already covered the assassination cinematically, whether we believe his conclusion or not, so I’m not that curious anymore to go back there. This simply doesn’t feel fresh or fill me with intrigue.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES – Based on a 2009 novel with Jane Austen credited as co-author, this alternate version of the 19th century classic has Elizabeth and her sisters looking for romance amidst a zombie outbreak in Victorian England. Mike White replaces previously attached David O. Russell as director.

@ – This just sounds dumb. Zombies are already overexposed on movie and TV screens, considering how little they actually do. Mashing them up with a boring Jane Austen setting is not my idea of how to liven them up. The change in directors, however, is a good idea. White seems quirky enough to make this premise rise above its own stupidity. I can’t imagine Russell being able to pull that off.

Which of these most interests you?

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