Dustin Hoffman, Eileen Atkins and Derek Jacobi get ready for ‘Hollywood’ – Deadline
EXCLUSIVE: Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman (Rain man), Emmy nominee Sam Neill (Jurassic Park), BAFTA winner Eileen Atkins (The crown), BAFTA winner Derek Jacobi (Gladiator), IFTA candidate Aidan Turner (The Hobbit), Effort star Roger Allam and Perfect Star Brittany Snow set to lead cast for comedy Mr. Shaw goes to Hollywood, which is launched for the TIFF market.
Set in 1933, the film will retrace how famous playwright George Bernard Shaw (Jacobi) visited Hollywood with his wonderful wife, Charlotte (Atkins). The idea of ââtransforming Shaw’s most successful play, Pygmalion, in a movie was a hot topic of conversation as the big and the good of Hollywood vied for its attention, desperate to be a part of the next big movie. How the Irish-born writer and social reformer would rub shoulders with the Hollywood elite and, perhaps more importantly, intended to sell the rights to his beloved story to a film studio ? Mr. Shaw goes to Hollywood tells the story of what could have happened before the world knew the play in its musical form, My beautiful lady.
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Hoffman will play legendary studio boss Louis B Mayer, co-founder of MGM. Aidan Turner will play Clark Gable and Sam Neill will be William Randolph Hearst.
Nominated for BAFTA Simon Callow (Four weddings and a funeral) was chosen to direct the film from a screenplay by seven-time Emmy winner Mark Saltzman (Sesame Street) who had already scripted a play of the same name. Callow’s second film as director is currently in pre-production, with filming set to begin later this year in the UK.
Bankside is launching global sales for the Toronto market this week.
Pic is produced by Rhian Williams, Joanne Podmore (You are not you) and Rachel Higginson. Ellen Little is an executive producer alongside Saltzman and Yuri Spiro.
Callow said of the project: âHollywood in 1933 was at the height of its power, reaching millions of moviegoers around the world, gobbling up the greatest writers, directors and actors, and as often as they didn’t spit them out. It was a world both chic and wild, ruthlessly controlled by studio bosses, of whom Louis B Mayer (Hoffman) was the arch-manipulator. Mark Saltzman’s sparkling script shows us what happens when such a man meets someone whose job he wants but whose wealth and fame make him insurmountable. Perhaps the greatest celebrity of his time, GBS (Jacobi) is touring Hollywood, forcing some of the most legendary figures in film history to face the realities of their situation. We see the brutal truth of what lies behind the elegant and witty surface; it is a spectacle that is both delicious and sobering.
Producer Jo Podmore added, âSuch clever, cunning and satirical work is a rare find these days. We are extremely fortunate to have attracted some of the finest and most decorated acting talent in the industry to work alongside Simon’s famous quick-wit. All of this will create a unique dazzling and entertaining film; bringing to life the glamor, charm, slaps in the back and the double game of the golden age of Hollywood.
Callow is best known for his prolific body as an actor both on stage and on screen, and his work as both writer and director, directing Willy Russell’s West End and Broadway premieres. Shirley valentine with Pauline Collins, as well as Single spies by Alan Bennett at the National Theater and Musicals Carmen Jones, the pajama game and My beautiful lady. His first feature film was The Ballad of the Sad CafÃ© for Marchand-Ivoire, with Vanessa Redgrave and Rod Steiger.
Williams, Podmore and Higginson are represented by UTA and ITG; Callow by Cruickshank Cazenove; Saltzman by Sendroff & Baruch; Neill by ICM Partners, Authentic Talent and Literary Management, Curtis Brown Group and Shanahan Management; Hoffman by Tavistock Wood Management and WME; Atkins and Jacobi by Independent Talent Group; and Turner by ICM Partners, Lisa Richards Agency and Principal Entertainment LA. Snow is replaced by Gersh and Principal Entertainment LA.