Thursday, February 18, 2010 at 9:02PM
I think this is pretty much sealed. It has the look of one of those projects where everything just clicks where it needs to. And like most movies, where it needs to click is where the money comes from. A recent Los Angeles Times article claims that Amanda Seyfried might be the top choice for modernized, gothic Little Red Riding Hood.
Seyfried has emerged as one of the few younger actresses with a modicum of bankability. She's not Angelina Jolie or anything, but the recognition she received from Mamma Mia and her opening weekend with Dear John can't really be overlooked. Jennifer's Body? Not her movie. Her character's story, sure, but it was overtly marketed as a Megan Fox vehicle, and the backlash against Ms. Fox was pretty pronounced last year.
She would be playing Alice in The Girl with the Red Riding Hood, a title I sincerely hope gets changed. Leonardo DiCaprio is producing and David Johnson (The Orphan) has been working on a script revision. The other news is that Warner Bros. apparently wants Catherine Hardwicke to direct it, and gee I wonder why.
The Red Riding redux is hitching its wagon to Twilight's star, hoping to cash in on the feverish devotion for that series. The marketing for this is ready-made for the younger audience already: "From the director of Twilight - Dear John's Amanda Seyfried..."
The Times says in spite of that approach, which the studio should undoubtedly use to its advantage, Johnson's screenplay is "elevated genre material," and a comparison is even made to Shutter Island. High praise; they should be so lucky.
I feel compelled to point out that Seyfried can act, by the way, so it may not be purely a move based on her current popularity. She was bucking for the lead role in Alice in Wonderland and she's done a few films where she's had to share the spotlight, and with Mamma Mia and the upcoming Chloe, that meant being up to the challenge laid down by some of the better actors around. Granted, in the ABBA musical, nobody much gave a damn, but it's a far cry from Sophia Coppola in Godfather III.