News: Now showing in theaters: CRY MACHO, directed by and starring Clint Eastwood!


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Topics - iconfan

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This is for the morbidly curious I guess

I was wondering if anyone out there has been keeping track of how many people Eastwood's many characters ( beyond Harry Callahan ) have killed in Eastwood's career

I only mention this because on you tube there are a few videos where someone actually went in and counted the total body count of all 4 Rambo films (its well over a hundred)

And I have to assume that someone, somewhere has been keeping tabs on the Eastwood total.....

2
Now don't jump on me immediately... I just had a thought and wanted to share it here

Now I am not questining Eastwood's decision in a mean spirited way (heck, maybe he just enjoyed working with the guy in Invicitus and wanted to have a chance at working with him again on this film too) but I wonder how much marketibility 'thought process' went into the decision to have Matt Damon play the lead?

After all... many of Eastwood's films have a pretty lean budget (under 50 mill in many cases) and he does a magnificent job of putting every dime on the screen so there isn't alot riding on this film making money. Not that it won't, but we all know of a multitude of films that go OUT OF THEIR WAY to grab a "name" star to be IN the film so that the film has half a chance at "opening" large on the critical opening weekend

Matter of fact, (depending on the film) there have been times when the studio grabbed a "Name" star and suddenly the budget was able to grow pretty large BECAUSE the star was on board, whereas anyone else, the budget would have stayed the same and the director would have had to make do

And yes, I am also aware that many, many actors forego their usual fee's in order to WORK with Eastwood. But I'm talking the drawing power of Damon and not his skipping the salary and perks for a chance to work with eastwood twice.

Another point... Eastwood is at a peak in his career and the words... "A film by Clint Eastwood", wether he is starring or not. guarentees the film will make back it's money

And so.... to my point....was Matt Damon needed?

Would the film be just as intense with an unknown in the lead? But then, if they HAD chosen a lesser known actor...would the film attract the audience needed to make the money the studio hopes it will in order to be some measure of success?
And I do like damon's work, dont get me wrong....but I have played this game with a couple of other films of late and wondered...did this film REALLY need the "NAME" of the star or could a lesser known actor have done just as good a job?

I urge comments on this as we wait for the film to open. Just thought I'd throw this on the table for a conversation starter

3
I mean I can understand that he may feel the actual WORK should speak for itself and it
has spoken for itself as it is now wrapping up its theatrical run.

But........

These days, instead of fragile VHS tape we used to buy,  all films are preserved on very durable DVD.

Available forever for future generations to enjoy, study and appreciate.

Heck, this film (and Letters From Iwo Jima) could qualify not only in and of themselves as films....but also as-----
 
1. Learning tools for schools and colleges around the world in some history class

2. A way for future filmmakers to not only study the film itself but also enjoy watching the man at his craft.

3. Fans of the man's work could also enjoy extras and featurettes

4. Yes, even a good audio commentary is generally good for ONE listen-thru but still--- everybody does them these days. But even without an audio commentary (from at LEAST the producer) we would still enjoy some featurettes or 'Making of' pieces.
 Even hundreds of badly made films have all of this stuff.

Down side?
WEll, what many DVD buyers do NOT appreciate is the double/triple dipping studios shamelessly do. I will rent this one and see it again but like others I will wait a bit and see if the studio will release a Boxed set (for both historical and collector purposes as well as the fact it would be a really cool boxed set) and maybe we'll get some featurettes that way......

If anything should have a behind the scenes feature it should be these two films.
As I said, not only would the fans and young filmmakers enjoy them but thousands of teachers would love to show not only the film but some well made Iwo Jima documentary (which should have at LEAST been on this DVD release) ABOUT the war and what happened and why.......

Oh well. At least Eastwood was able to make the film he wanted and now its available for all.
Maybe the tenth anniversary edition will have a two disc edition.......
(or the studio is waiting for the seventyfifth anniversary of the event itself before releasing something we all deserve to see and own.     sigh..................
Guess they'll never learn.

But thanks Clint- it's a great film and maybe it will see a larger audience now that it IS out on DVD since maybe since it was the Holidays or it got stuck in a bad time slot that nobody made time to see it but now that they can own or rent it maybe it will be seen by the larger audience it deserves. (And Letters is probably a month or so down the road so maybe the studio will get some of its investment back- an Oscar or two should help that point tremendously)

4
Questions & Answers / Whats the name of the song?
« on: December 26, 2006, 10:01:43 AM »
The end credits of Space Cowboys




WARNING  slight spoiler-----
if you havent seen Space Cowboys-----




The end song as the camera swoops over the surface of the moon and settles on the astronaut and I am pretty sure its Frank Sinatra singing "Fly me to the Moon" and then just as we get that very cool close up of the helmet and the drums beat out the final cords just as
Produced and Directed by
Clint Eastwood
appears....

whats the name of that song and isnt that Frank Sinatra singing it?

I want to go to itunes to buy it for my collection but I cant see it- I thought for sure it would be called Fly me to the Moon but I cant find it--

a little help please! THANKS!!

5
General Discussion / How much for a (Letters)screenplay?
« on: December 24, 2006, 09:51:59 AM »
RE-edited by iconfan to try to make the question clearer......


This will be a delicate question as it involves asking how much money someone in the industry made which as with all conversations of this type, -from Hollywood gossip to the neighbor down the street who just installed a backyard patio-it's considered bad form to ask.

But I am asking anyway since I should think  film students, film fans and especially wannabe screenwriters here on the board are very curious as to how this process works. Besides which---on any given week- you can find many entertainment sources that reveal how much one actor made vs. another actor or the budget of this film compared to that film etc etc etc...

My specific question is to the 'story' of how Clint went to Paul Haggis and asked him if he knew any screenwriters who would want to write the Letters screenplay. Especially since (as Eastwood had said) He had no money to pay for the screenplay. (I took it mean of course,....very little pay)

Now this has been said during an interview (specifically this mornings AMC channel SUNDAY MORNING SHOOTOUT with Peter Guber and Peter Bart. ) as a toss-away joke kind of thing which is supposed to cover the subject (I assume) and your supposed to go away satisfied that well, they obviously handled the problem since the film did indeed get made (FROM a screenplay)

I should think since he obviously wanted to get the film made, he could have easily written a check from his own checking account and gotten reimbursed from Dreamworks. (which could have been said in the form of "well, I didnt have alot of money and I offered her what is known as scale wages which I hoped she would accept. And of course she did." Or at least joke about it the way Donald Sutherland did when he was asked to star in Space Cowboys...He jokingly said "Great- Where do I send the check?" But of course he got SOME kind of paycheck even though theres probably a long list of actors who would gladly work FOR scale in order to have the honor of working with Eastwood)

Hell, Mel Gibson has done two major films from his own pocket himself. Gibson obviously had the personal funds of  a hundred million dollars to film Passion of the Christ and it did in fact go on to sit comfortably in the top ten films of all time and earned Gibson back his personal investment five times over....I should think that Clint could easily have paid just above basic scale (whatever it is) and one of Paul's student's (as it happens) Iris Yamas@#ta would have been just as thrilled to DO it for scale wages. (I should think scale would be about a few thousand a week )

 
So how did Iris finally get paid....

Wouldn't it be already part of the budget FOR Letters?
Unless Eastwood KNEW it would be a tough sell and he needed a screenplay to shop around in which case where DO you get the upfront money to pay someone to create a screenplay not even knowing if the film will see the light of day?

And if in fact it was a part of the budget then why would Eastwood just blow it off as something that almost didnt get done at all because he didn't have any cash laying around and maybe the studio wasn't about to pay even scale wages for a first time screenwriter for what must have seemed at the time (preproduction) quite a risky subject. (even though prize winning Eastwood himself would be the director)(And NO, the studio as far as I know did NOT indicate that. But I am just curious as to what happened. IF anyone knows)

So if anyone has information on this I would appreciate it. I tired not to make this sound crass or too negative but it just seems silly to me when filmmakers 'blow off' important tivia/information when thousands of fans and or other wannabe screenwriters are out in the real world hungry for information about this kind of behind the scenes info.

Which is important information FOR unknowns looking to break into the indusrtry aside from all of the countless other drivel that is over-available for all to see....such as the latest nosepicking Paris Hilton did or even more news about Tom Cruise's child. (I feel---hey okay the guy had a kid....but whats the next film he plans to do? lets get to the meat and potatoes of info)

I am also very interested because I feel LETTERS could very well become a classic if not a cult classic among both critics and film fans. Not making hundreds of millions but being considered something that will be studied and admired for generations.

And take note of the fact that the movie (Letters) was filmed from a FIRST DRAFT also!

And I feel it will also thrust Iris into a big spotlight as well and might lead to even more work for her.

But little trivia about the behind the scenes would be quite interesting to all ....just like the amazing story of how Sylvester Stallone wrote the ROCKY screenplay in 3 days and shopped it around and actually had a studio offer him a few hundred thousand dollars for the screenplay (which back in the seventies for a first time writer/unkown was an amazing payday in and of itself) and then the fact that he had the guts to ask to be the lead character or else he would KEEP the screenplay!

And of course, he starred and went on to make history and even now, this very weekend, over 30 years AFTER he sold that first screenplay----Rocky Balboa (the 5 th sequel) looks to make at least 30 million its opening weekend when everybody thought it wouldnt make a dime....

amazing stories.

So, again, I am just curious.

6
The classic film Its a Wonderful Life is on and I had a thought I'd like to open up here for speculation....spinning off a bit on the scene where Clarence the Angel makes it possible for George Bailey to see what would have happened if he had never been born.......

As the story goes, Eastwood was in the middle of researching Flags of Our Fathers when he became very interested in the story of the Japanese General Kuribayshi and his incredible stradegy on the island of tunneling underground (almost 18 MILES of tunnels including multiple storied bunkers were made in preperation for the attack) as a form of defense against the incoming American troups.

FROM that research...Eastwood commisioned a screenplay and filmed it after editing Flags
in a few short weeks.
Much smaller budget.
Much shorter production time.
Arguably a Very bold move on Eastwood's part.

And now...Letters is receiving countless praise and a warm reception from not only critics but also the average moviegoer both here AND in Japan where, surprisingly, many of them had never heard of the war.

Now just think upon the few ironies that have unfolded so far......

What if Spielberg HAD been able to get a handle on his adaptaion of the popular book Flags of our Fathers....
Would he have done the same research Eastwood had done? Let alone thought to produce a companion film about the general?

What if any OTHER director would have optioned the book?
Would another director had included the General a bit more within the context of (their vision) a FLAGS film?

Would the General's story had been told at all?
Or would he and his efforts (and the sacrificed troups)remained a vauge footnote on a dozen pages of history books?

Now as we know- Flags has, unfortunately, for whatever reason, been met with little enthusiasm from filmgoers and has floundered at the boxoffice, (barely bringing in 40 million) while LETTERS...which was a direct result of Eastwood's keen intrest in the General's tactics, seems to be growing in popularity with both critics and filmgoers....

I just thought it was interesting and wanted to post it here. It will be very interesting to see what happens as the film opens wider into next month and also to see what reception it gets at the Oscars while in direct competition with it's companion film, FLAGS.

Because perhaps WITHOUT Eastwood having made that first film...LETTERS might not have been created at all and it may very well turn out ironically that with proper nurturing from the marketing department AND a growing support from filmgoers the world over that LETTERS could become not only one of Eastwood's most impressive projects in his career- but it could become one of the benchmark anti-war films of all time.

Perhaps.....perhaps not......

Any thoughts?

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