Willem Dafoe signs up for Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley

Willem Dafoe has joined the likes of Bradley Cooper and Cate Blanchett in Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley.The upcoming project, the second movie adaptation of William Lindsay Gresham’s 1946 novel of the same name, is set in a world of carnival hus…

Willem Dafoe has joined the likes of Bradley Cooper and Cate Blanchett in Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley.

The upcoming project, the second movie adaptation of William Lindsay Gresham’s 1946 novel of the same name, is set in a world of carnival hustlers, and tells the story of a con man named Stanton ‘Stan’ Carlisle, portrayed by Cooper, who teams up with psychologist Lilith, to be played by Blanchett, to swindle the rich before she turns the tables on him.

The Oscar nominee has been cast as Clem Hoately, a head barker at a travelling carnival who gives Carlisle a job, according to Variety.

He joins a cast which also includes Toni Collette, who will portray a mentalist named Zeena who mentors Carlisle, and Rooney Mara, who will be playing Carlisle’s love interest, Molly.

Richard Jenkins and Michael Shannon, who previously starred in del Toro’s previous film, the Oscar-winning The Shape of Water, are also reportedly circling the project, while his Hellboy collaborator Ron Perlman is rumoured to have a role.

Del Toro will direct the film for Fox Searchlight from a script he co-wrote with Kim Morgan, with production set to begin at the start of 2020. Nightmare Alley was previously brought to the screen in 1947, with Tyrone Power taking on the role of Carlisle.

Dafoe is enjoying an impressive run of projects of late. He has been receiving critical praise for his performance alongside Robert Pattinson in David Eggers’s The Lighthouse and will soon be seen in Edward Norton’s directorial effort, Motherless Brooklyn, as well as political thriller The Last Thing He Wanted.

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Guillermo del Toro rules out returning to comic book movies

Guillermo del Toro has ruled out directing another comic book movie.The Mexican filmmaker helmed Blade II in 2002, which starred Wesley Snipes as Marvel’s crime-fighting vampire, and 2004’s Hellboy and 2008’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army, with Ron P…

Guillermo del Toro has ruled out directing another comic book movie.

The Mexican filmmaker helmed Blade II in 2002, which starred Wesley Snipes as Marvel’s crime-fighting vampire, and 2004’s Hellboy and 2008’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army, with Ron Perlman as the titular character from the graphic novels by Mike Mignola.

However, del Toro has moved on with his career and comic book movies don’t interest him anymore.

“At each moment of your life, you do the things that attract you. And back when I was doing Hellboy and Blade, it was a little bit counter to what was being made,” he told Variety. “But as you grow older, your concerns as a filmmaker change. I only direct the things that I’m incredibly avid to see, and that would not exist if I didn’t tackle it. I always ask myself, ‘Would this movie exist if I didn’t make it?’ And if the answer is yes, I don’t do it.”

While he’s ditching superhero movies, the Oscar-winning director is set to bring the tale of Pinocchio to the big screen, and warned fans of the Disney animated classic that his take will be much darker.

“To me, Pinocchio, very much like Frankenstein, is a blank canvas in which learning the curve of what the world is and what being human is are very attractive to do as a story,” he said of the beloved tale, which is based on Carlo Collodi’s 19th century novel.

“I’m very attracted to it because, thematically – and I don’t want to spoil what the movie’s about – it’s about something that is in all of my movies, which is choice. That’s a theme that is very dear to my heart. It’s essentially a very brutalist fable about what a sin disobedience is. I think there’s something that’s very attractive about seeing disobedience as a virtue, or as the beginning of a virtue.”

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David Harbour on Hellboy’s problems

David Harbour is proud of his work on the widely-panned Hellboy, but concedes the feature had its fair share of problems. The comic book anti-hero was first played by Ron Perlman back in 2004, and he returned for sequel, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, i…

David Harbour is proud of his work on the widely-panned Hellboy, but concedes the feature had its fair share of problems.

The comic book anti-hero was first played by Ron Perlman back in 2004, and he returned for sequel, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, in 2008.

More than 10 years later, Hellboy returned to the big screen in a reboot released in April, with Stranger Things star Harbour as the titular character, and Neil Marshall taking over from Guillermo del Toro on directing duties.

However, the movie was derided by critics, and ended up being a box office bomb, making only $40 million (£31.6) worldwide on a $50 million (£39.5 million) budget.

Now, Harbour has confirmed that the reboot was hit by behind-the-scenes drama during the production, and the movie had “too many cooks in the kitchen”.

“We did our best, but there’s so many voices that go into these things and they’re not always going to work out. I did what I could do and I feel proud of what I did, but ultimately I’m not in control of a lot of those things,” the 44-year-old told Cinema Blend.

The movie was reportedly hit with multiple script re-writes, alleged clashes between director Marshall and producers Lawrence Gordon and Lloyd Levin, and even leading man Harbour walking off set numerous times.

The actor also blamed critics having “unfair expectations” of Hellboy by comparing it to the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise.

“So everybody goes chocolate is delicious and these guys make the best chocolate. So as you judge the movies, it’s like, ‘Well it’s not as chocolatey as this, this does not taste like chocolate at all’. And I sort of want a world where there’s more flavours than just comparisons to chocolate,” Harbour explained.

“So in that way when Hellboy is viewed on the chocolate spectrum, it does very poorly. That being said, it also has major problems.”

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Ron Perlman has ‘violent mixed emotions’ about new Hellboy movie

Actor Ron Perlman is not happy about the new Hellboy movie because he feels it has prevented director Guillermo del Toro completing his trilogy – with him as the star. Perlman played Mike Mignola’s graphic novel character in the first two Hellboy movi…

Actor Ron Perlman is not happy about the new Hellboy movie because he feels it has prevented director Guillermo del Toro completing his trilogy – with him as the star.

Perlman played Mike Mignola’s graphic novel character in the first two Hellboy movies, both directed by the Oscar winner, but Stranger Things star David Harbour has stepped in to play Hellboy in Neil Marshall’s new film – and the veteran actor is not thrilled.

“I have mixed feelings, really mixed feelings, violently mixed feelings, because of the fact that Guillermo fought for seven years to get me to be the Hellboy against all odds, and against all wishes of the studios, he really had doors slammed in his face for seven years by wanting to have me do it,” Ron tells MailOnline.

“So the fact that we got it made and then we got a second one made, and then the second one was so set up for the third one there seemed to be a natural trajectory to the evolution of this title.

“When we fell short of getting the third one made and the producers found a way to continue using the title, but in a completely different way, I found that to be going against the tides of the universe, and so I said I’ll wait for Guillermo to want to finish the trilogy, that’s the only thing I’m interested in doing… The only thing that’s important to me is to finish what we started, which is the third film, so those are my thoughts.”

The 68 year old adds, “I put up a very public fight to try to whip everybody into saying it was Hellboy 3 or nothing, and I found out it wasn’t Hellboy 3 or nothing; it was Hellboy 3 or somebody just wanting to go into a different direction.”

But Perlman has no ill will towards the new Hellboy star, revealing he met Harbour for dinner just before filming started.

“I told him to have a lot of fun because if you can’t have fun playing Hellboy then you shouldn’t be in the business,” Ron recalls. “I still wish him well. He seems like a really good guy.”

The new Hellboy movie opens on Friday (12Apr19).

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T.I. and Ron Perlman join Monster Hunter adaptation

Rapper/actor T.I. and movie veteran Ron Perlman are jumping into action for the big screen adaptation of Monster Hunter. They will join leading lady Milla Jovovich in the film, based on the popular Capcom video game, in which players track down and ki…

Rapper/actor T.I. and movie veteran Ron Perlman are jumping into action for the big screen adaptation of Monster Hunter.

They will join leading lady Milla Jovovich in the film, based on the popular Capcom video game, in which players track down and kill various monsters.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, T.I. is set to play a Link, a top sniper, while Hellboy star Perlman portrays Admiral, the leader of the Hunter’s Crew.

Milla’s husband, Paul W.S. Anderson, will direct the project from a script he also wrote.

Details regarding the plot remain unknown, but production is due to begin in South Africa next month (Oct18).

Jovovich and Anderson have already experienced huge success adapting a cult Capcom game for Hollywood after working together on the Resident Evil film franchise. The action-horror series debuted in 2002 with Milla as protagonist Alice, and concluded with a sixth instalment, titled The Final Chapter, in 2016, banking over $1.2 billion at the global box office. It is now reportedly in the process of being rebooted with a new lead actress.

Meanwhile, Monster Hunter marks the latest big film gig for T.I. after joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2015 with a role in Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man as one of the titular character’s sidekicks. He reprised his part as Dave in this year’s (18) sequel, Ant-Man and the Wasp.

He also recently wrapped working alongside comedy icon Eddie Murphy in Dolemite Is My Name!, a biopic about late funnyman Rudy Ray Moore, which is being developed for streaming service Netflix.

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