Meryl Streep: ‘The Laundromat is a funny way of telling a dark joke that’s being played on all of us’

Meryl Streep has described her new film The Laundromat as a “funny way of telling a black-hearted joke that’s being played on all of us.”Steven Soderbergh’s new film, which also stars Gary Oldman and Antonio Banderas, is a comic take on the 2016 Panama…

Meryl Streep has described her new film The Laundromat as a “funny way of telling a black-hearted joke that’s being played on all of us.”

Steven Soderbergh’s new film, which also stars Gary Oldman and Antonio Banderas, is a comic take on the 2016 Panama Papers scandal, when powerful individuals across the world were found to have engaged in tax avoidance schemes.

Although The Laundromat is a comedy, Meryl insisted during a press conference at the Venice Film Festival on Sunday that it had a serious message.

“This movie is fun and it’s funny, but it’s really, really, really important,” she said. “We’re living in a moment when the news cycle is racing and we are racing to keep up with current events. This is a funny way to tell a black-hearted joke, a joke that’s been played on all of us.”

The three-time Oscar winner then heaped praise on Daphne Caruana Galizia, the Maltese reporter working on the story, who was killed in a car bombing in 2017.

“People died and people die still to get the word out… It is a crime not without victims and the victims, many of them are journalists. The reason the Panama Papers were exported out to the world was the work of journalists. People died because of this,” she added.

Meryl plays Ellen Martin, a fictional widow whose digging in the film helps journalists expose the scandal, in the film.

Director Soderbergh recently said he was inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s Cold War epic Dr. Strangelove while making The Laundromat, as he and writer Scott Z. Burns thought the only way the subject could be tackled was with dark comedy.

“It also gave us the opportunity to use the complexity of these financial activities almost as a joke,” Soderbergh explained. “Otherwise, people would feel they were being educated instead of entertained.”

The Laundromat will be available on Netflix on 18 October after a limited theatrical release.

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Gary Oldman to star as Citizen Kane screenwriter in new biopic

Gary Oldman is teaming with filmmaker David Fincher on a new biopic about the screenwriter behind movie classic Citizen Kane. The Darkest Hour actor will portray Herman Mankiewicz in Mank, which will chronicle his rise to fame, first as a news report…

Gary Oldman is teaming with filmmaker David Fincher on a new biopic about the screenwriter behind movie classic Citizen Kane.

The Darkest Hour actor will portray Herman Mankiewicz in Mank, which will chronicle his rise to fame, first as a news reporter and critic in New York City, before moving to Hollywood to begin a career in the film industry.

Among Mankiewicz’s credits include The Wizard of Oz, The Pride of the Yankees, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, but it was 1941’s Citizen Kane that cemented his legacy.

However, his relationship with director and co-writer Orson Welles became strained after Mankiewicz accused the filmmaker of trying to take sole credit for the script, which won them the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

The biopic has been a passion project for Fincher for the past two decades, after initially trying to get the film into production following the release of 1997’s The Game.

It has also been of particular interest for the director as his father, Howard ‘Jack’ Fincher, wrote the original script for the movie prior to his death in 2003.

Mank will also be shot in black-and-white and will premiere on streaming service Netflix. Fincher will produce alongside partner Cean Chaffin and Oldman’s longtime collaborator Douglas Urbanski, who played Harvard president Larry Summers in Fincher’s 2010 movie, The Social Network.

The 61-year-old Brit will next be seen in Steven Soderbergh’s Panama Papers drama The Laundromat, alongside Meryl Streep and Antonio Banderas. The award-winning actor has also just finished filming Joe Wright’s The Woman in the Window, which will be released in 2020.

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Scott Z. Burns to rewrite Bond 25 script – report

Screenwriter Scott Z. Burns has reportedly been drafted in to rewrite the Bond 25 script. According to a report by The Playlist, The Bourne Ultimatum writer has been brought in to overhaul the current screenplay by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, followi…

Screenwriter Scott Z. Burns has reportedly been drafted in to rewrite the Bond 25 script.

According to a report by The Playlist, The Bourne Ultimatum writer has been brought in to overhaul the current screenplay by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, following the news that the film’s release has been pushed back by two months to April 2020.

Bond producers had reportedly been courting Burns for months to get him onboard for a rewrite, but he was busy with his own directorial feature The Report, which received much acclaim when it debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January.

Burns is now in London and will be spending at least four weeks working on the script, according to the report.

Burns is one of Hollywood’s go-to script doctors, doing uncredited rewrites on films such as Ocean’s Twelve and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in addition to his credited work on The Mercy and Steven Soderbergh movies like Contagion, Side Effects and the upcoming The Laundromat, a drama starring Gary Oldman and Meryl Streep inspired by the Panama Papers scandal.

Over the weekend, Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli announced that the 25th instalment would be hitting cinemas on 8 April 2020 instead of its previously scheduled date of Valentine’s Day 2020. The film had originally been scheduled for release this November (19) but it was pushed back after original director, Slumdog Millionaire’s Danny Boyle, quit due to creative differences and was replaced by True Detective’s Cary Joji Fukunaga.

Filming was originally scheduled to begin in March at Pinewood Studios near London but it is unclear if this is still the case. Daniel Craig is back for his fifth turn as 007 and will be joined by returning stars Lea Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Ralph Fiennes.

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Riley Keough circling Panama Papers drama

Actress Riley Keough is in talks to reunite with director Steven Soderbergh for his all-star Panama Papers drama The Laundromat. The scandal hit headlines in 2016, when millions of files from the database of Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca were …

Actress Riley Keough is in talks to reunite with director Steven Soderbergh for his all-star Panama Papers drama The Laundromat.

The scandal hit headlines in 2016, when millions of files from the database of Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca were leaked online, exposing the financial records of many public figures and revealing how clients could use the company to evade tax authorities by setting up offshore accounts.

Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, and Antonio Banderas have already been cast to lead the film, which will focus on the group of journalists who uncovered the controversy, while former Friends star David Schwimmer has since been added to the line-up too.

Now comedian Will Forte and Elvis Presley’s granddaughter Keough are also eyeing roles in the movie, which is based on Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jake Bernstein’s 2017 book, Secrecy World: Inside the Panama Papers Investigation of Illicit Money Networks and the Global Elite.

Soderbergh will produce and direct the project from a script by Scott Z. Burns, and it will be financed and released by bosses at streaming service Netflix, reports Deadline.com.

If Keough signs on, The Laundromat will mark her third film with Soderbergh, following her appearances in his 2012 hit Magic Mike, and last year’s (17) heist comedy Logan Lucky, which both starred Channing Tatum.

She also earned a Golden Globe nomination in 2016 for her role in the TV adaptation of his film The Girlfriend Experience, which Soderbergh produced.

He won’t be the only familiar face on set for Riley – her ex-boyfriend, Alex Pettyfer, is also said to be involved in the movie.

They dated on and off from 2011 until 2013, and were also said to have been engaged, but Riley is now happily married after tying the knot with stuntman Ben Smith-Petersen in 2015.

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