True Detective, Johnny Depp, a Salami Stick

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Good morning: In today’s edition of The Industry, we look at:

A new season of True Detective; Obama as script critic; Johnny Depp as director; Benicio Del Toro as writer; And a salami stick. Seriously….it’s hilarous.

Let’s Go!

TRUE DETECTIVE…THE BEST SEASON IN A DECADE?

true detective season 4 soooo cold

HBO will premiere the 4th season of True Detective on January 14th, 2024.

The 4th season trailer is stained with iconography reminiscent of the 1st season, including spiral symbols, dangling dream catchers, and contorted corpses. Set in Alaska but filmed in Iceland, the frozen landscape is a conduit by which Jodie Foster and Kali Reis“ confront the darkness they carry in themselves.”

Foster, channeling a less skittish version of her Oscar-winning performance as Clarice Starling, investigates the bizarre murders of eight men who operate an Arctic Research Station. While plot details are thin, the final image of the trailer is an ice cave emblazoned with flashlights. In True Detective, all cavernous spaces, it seems, lead to madness and salvation.

Nic Pizzolatto the series creator, has been bumped to a purely non-creative role as Executive Producer for this 4th season. In his place is Issa Lopez, who wrote and directed the full season. If that name doesn’t sound familiar, you’re in good company as we’d never come across her work.

Lopez is a relative newcomer to the American Film and TV scene but is a culturally significant filmmaker in Mexico. Hailed by Guillermo Del Toro as “an important talent,” he gushed about her latest feature, Tigers Are Not Afraid at The Toronto Film Festival in 2019.

Lopez’s movie plays in the same sandbox as Pan’s Labyrinth—delivering equal doses of fairy tale and heartbreaking realism.

In taking on this new role, Lopez has leveled up from the 36-day 1.3M dollar film Tigers Are Not Afraid, to a 90+ day $64.8 million production for the the 4th season of True Detective.

It’s a huge win for auteur-driven television, and our hope is that she captures the essence of what was so spellbinding in the first season. We can’t wait to discover what the HBO marketing team says “lie[s] buried under the eternal ice.”

For more:

HBO chief Casey Bloys sees the light and rejects the use of AI in their series. “I don’t see a world where a writer is out of that process and a bunch of executives are saying, ‘OK ChatGPT gives us a great True Detective season.’

A play-by-play of how the WGA negotiations came together with the union leaders Chris Keyser and Meredith Stiehm. The gains, concessions, and the key turning points for those keeping score at home.

SAG/AMPTP strike negotiations will resume on Monday. The strike is over but the negioation continue. This is the first time the two sides have met since the strike began in July. So, while we’re optimistic, a swift resolution may be unlikely.

THE INDUSTRY NEWS

Byron Allen just offered Disney $10 billion for a slice of the empire.

Byron Allen just offered Disney $10 billion for a slice of the empire. But fear not, Pixar fans, our favorite asset is safe. The Allen Media Group, best known for owning The Weather Channel, placed a bid to buy ABC, FX, and the National Geographic Channel only. This comes amidst massive streaming losses for Disney, which may explain their need for quick cash.

Mattel Films films promoted Robbie Brenner to president following her success with Barbie. Previously an Executive Producer at Mattel, she rose through the ranks of Miramax and then later Relativity Media. I hope she splurges on a pink water slide.

Barack Obama gives harsh script notes. We might have figured, but writer/director Sam Esmail (Mr. Robotgot to experience it firsthand while adapting a book for the former commander-in-chief’s new film production company.

“I am writing what I think is fiction, for the most part, I’m trying to keep it as true to life as possible, but I’m exaggerating and dramatizing. And to hear an ex-president say you’re off by a few details…I thought I was off by a lot! The fact that he said that scared the fuck out of me.”

Godspeed Sam. We look forward to seeing Leave the World Behind, starring Julia Roberts on Netflix on December 8th.

THE ACTOR SPOTLIGHT

Actor Rod Hewry previously served as the comedic relief in Get Out.

Actor Rod Hewry previously served as the comedic relief in Get Out. Now he takes the lead role, and from what we can tell the majority of the screen time, in Hulu’s upcoming horror film The Mill. It’s always great to see character actors level up. Best of luck Rod, we’ll be watching!

Leagues away from studio bankability, Johnny Depp can now swim in the indie ocean. He directs the upcoming Modi, a bio-pick centered around Italian-American painter Amadeo Modigliani, who, “considered a commercial failure, navigates a turbulent and eventful 48 hours that will become a turning point in his life, solidifying his reputation as an artistic legend.” And the latest news for the project is that Italian actress Luisa Ranieri has joined the cast.

Benicio Del Toro has earned his first screenwriting credit. The actor is well known for advocating for fewer lines like in Sicario, where 80% of his dialogue was removed. In his upcoming film The Reptile, the producers invited him into the writing process early. We don’t know if he has the desire to become a screenwriter, but we can only dream of the silent character he would write.

TECH SECTION

IMAX has expertise in expansion.

IMAX has expertise in expansion. There’s nothing quite like seeing an extending 70ft screen. This time, IMAX has chosen to expand into buying back “China IMAX,” a brand it licensed its name to.

COVID has hit China’s 770 “IMAX” theaters hard, and IMAX is looking to capitalize, but minority shareholders are vowing to vote against any decision that could under value the company. IMAX smacked back Monday that COVID hit them hard, and this was the best way to stop the bleeding.

INDIE SPOTLIGHT

Serial killers in 35mm? That’s what Giovanni Ribisi must have envisioned when he lensed Strange Darling, a true-crime thriller.

Serial killers in 35mm? That’s what Giovanni Ribisi must have envisioned when he lensed Strange Darling, a true-crime thriller. Although a much-recognized actor, appearing in Avatar and Ted, this is his first project as DP. According to Variety, Giovanni “Brings out the color and texture of all the blood, handcuffs, and gunpowder this story entails in vivid detail.” Variety offers a glowing review but is hush on spoilers. But, oh do we miss film. There is something truly special about it.

Emerald Fennell is a promising young woman. We can’t tell if the latest trailer for her second feature, Saltburn, is Royal Tennebaums as a psychological thriller or the lovechild of Dead Poet’s Society and Spencer. Either way, Fennell seems to enjoy eliciting divisiveness in her audience, “I’m always really happy for people to argue and always expect some people not to like things.”

Luc Besson has always done his best work far from the American Studio system and nestled within France’s legendary Gaumont studio (Leon: The ProfessionalThe Fifth Element). He’s gone completely indie with his new film Dogman [trailer]. Casting Cannes 2021’s best actor, Caleb Landry Jones (NitramThree Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), as a boy who has suffered abuse at the hands of his cruel master, his father, commits to exacting revenge through cross-dressing, shotguns, and his love of dogs. We predict there will be a few awards being handed out for this one!

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

We’re booking flights to Estonia. A culture that fostered the conditions for this Heavy Metal Kung-Fu film, The Invisible Fight, we have to show up for.

We’re booking flights to Estonia. A culture that fostered the conditions for this Heavy Metal Kung-Fu film, The Invisible Fight, we have to show up for. We can’t quite get a handle on what it’s about, but this battle training scene involving a salami stick is worth the watch [clip].

Representing the film’s distributor, Kino Lorber, SVP of Distribution, Wendy Lidell noted, “Delightfully inventive and riotously funny, The Invisible Fight makes it clear that the joy of kung fu cinema is celebrated worldwide, even as far as Estonia. We couldn’t be more thrilled to bring this wildly entertaining take on the genre to American audiences.” We’re here for it, Wendy.

Sudan at Cannes. Goodbye Julia made history this year as the first-ever Sudanese film to make it into the festival. Notably, it’s now the country’s official submission to the Academy Awards. A submission that was made while the government was in exile.

ON THIS DAY

1945 “Mildred Pierce” starring Joan Crawford opens at Strand Theater, NYC; wins Academy Award for Best Actress

Today’s edition was written by: Gabriel MillerClarke Scott, and Spencer Carter.

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