Hollywood should rewrite male roles for women, feels Clooney

13 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Movie is called Our Brand Is Crisis but Clooney, Bullock handle press like pros at TIFF.

Sandra Bullock reunited with her ‘gravity’ co-star George Clooney and was seen having a great time on the second day of the 40th Toronto International Film Festival.“There is only one ‘wrong’ here and that is losing!” shouts Sandra Bullock at a room of uncomprehending flunkies in her latest role as a political pugilist handling a tricky campaign.

The 51-year-old actress, who wore a black cut-out dress, was looking stunning at the premier of her upcoming film ‘Our Brand Is Crisis’, held at the Film Festival, as she walked on the carpet alongside the ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ actor, who looked equally stylish at festival, the People magazine reports. Brought out of an early retirement from the world of polls and focus groups, her character is “a fighter who is being given another shot at the title”. Through it all, the 51-year-old Virginian has maintained a remarkably healthy sense of humour and shown herself to be responsible, sensible and quick to crack a joke. Helmed by David Gordon, the forthcoming film, which also stars Billy Bob Thornton, Zoe Kazan and Anthony Mackie, will hit the U.S. theaters on Oct. 30, 2015. Certainly the hard-bitten skulduggery she displays in the film, which premiered on Friday night, is nothing like the winsome antics once associated with a star formerly known to the world as Miss Congeniality.

What I want for the future [is] more of the same but if it doesn’t happen there will be a good reason for it.” Earlier this month, Us Weekly exclusively revealed that Bullock is dating a new man, hot photographer Bryan Randall. That stamp of cuteness has been replaced with a knack for political chicanery and media strategy in a film that marks the next step in Bullock’s long career at the top of the film business. The two were first spotted together at Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux’s wedding in August, and have been keeping a low profile in Hollywood since then. Bullock, who plays a political spin doctor in Our Brand Is Crisis, which is produced by her longtime pal and Gravity costar George Clooney, added that she identified with her on-screen character because she was so “human.” “She’s struggling with mental illness, she’s struggling with addiction, she’s trying to take herself off the carousel once and she gets pulled back in because of an addictive need to win,” she said of her character, “Calamity” Jane Bodine. “That’s in all of us and those of us who don’t have it have been through enough journeys in life and enough hardships to come out on the other end and realize that’s not what life is about,” she added. “I look at things and think, ‘What am I going to leave behind for my son [Louis]? What things do I want to say that I want to parlay to him in what I feel about the world, and how I want the world to be?’” “I’ve been on the floor and I’ve been heartbroken,” she told The Mirror in 2013. “I didn’t know how I was going to stand up.

Clooney said, “Clearly what he said is idiotic, of course it’s idiotic, but I think we’re trying not to get into American or Canadian or anybody’s politics at a press conference because it ends up just being about that suddenly. Bullock agreed and there were plenty of other subjects to address, from her working relationship with longtime pals Clooney and Heslov (“We disagree well,” she said, as Clooney added, “We fight fair”) to a status update on her life and roles for women.

Critics settling down in their seats at the Canadian film festival, an event often seen, in political terminology, as a “bellwether” indicator for Oscar trends, must judge whether Bullock can possibly build on her recent run of impressive performances, from her 2004 appearance as a car-jacked district attorney’s wife in Crash, to her Academy Award-winning doughty mother in The Blind Side and her stratospheric 2013 outing in Gravity. What I’d like to comment on is the fact that I was able to say, ‘Would you be willing to take a role that was written and that you guys have cherished and worked on for a long time and developed a long time and change it to a female?’ “And there was not a lot of hesitation.

After a short period spent re-entering Earth’s atmosphere, during which Bullock has done little professionally aside from recording a voice part for the animated film Minions, she has judiciously selected her next role. Frequently ranked the most powerful (and highly paid) actress in Hollywood, Sandy – as she is known to friends – has also held on to her credentials as “America’s sweetheart”, a label she first earned in her 1994 action role opposite Keanu Reeves in Speed and then confirmed by virtue of a succession of kooky romcoms. “She is absolutely adored by the industry,” said Matt Mueller, editor of Screen International, from Toronto. “She has had real longevity and she really connects to audiences, whether she is in a drama or quite a broad comedy. She had reportedly worked hard at becoming a reliable stepmother to his three children by a previous marriage, despite a bitter custody battle, and had only then taken the decision to adopt a new child, Louis. Speaking on television earlier this year, Bullock said: “When he’s off to college, we’ll divert my attention to something else, but right now it’s all about Lou.” This summer the actress has been photographed out and about with Randall, who has been excitedly dubbed “another bad boy” because he has fallen foul of the law in various semi-serious ways, driving under the influence and reportedly scaring neighbours.

Bullock now stands tall alongside Angelina Jolie, Cate Blanchett and Julianne Moore – each of them powerbrokers who are prepared to punch hard alongside, or above, A-list Hollywood men. Things have certainly moved on since the old complaint that, following the golden age of the studios when Joan Crawford and Bette Davis held sway, an actress had no value in Tinseltown beyond the age of 30. Carville is the former spin doctor and political pundit who was a key player in several American Democratic election campaigns, including Bill Clinton’s 1992 victory over George H W Bush, and who was featured in the acclaimed documentary The War Room a year later.

In 2012 Straughan shared a Bafta and was nominated for an Oscar with his late wife Bridget O’Connor for his screenplay for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and he is no newcomer to pacing an intense political drama, having adapted Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall for the BBC to general acclaim this year. In the runup to the presidential race in America the appetite for political trickery and high stakes PR campaigning is probably reliably whetted by now.

The film clearly hopes to follow the success of Clooney’s 2011 political feature The Ides of March and on the popularity of Armando Iannucci’s satirical television series Veep, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfuss as a hapless vice-president who is soon destined to become a hapless first lady. Not only is Bullock’s latest one of a number of political tales testing the waters at Toronto, two of her fellow Hollywood queens are also appearing in roles that have one eye on the Oscar statuette.

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