Gary Marshall And Richard Gere Remaking Capra

By Katey Rich 2009-09-29 09:12:12discussion comments
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Frank Capra made one movie set in our nation's capital, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, that has become a classic. But apparently there's another one lurking in his filmography that Gary Marshall sees fit to bring back to life. State of the Union, which starred Spencer Tracy as an aircraft tycoon called upon to run as the Republican candidate for President, will be remade as a vehicle for Richard Gere and Annette Bening (in the Katharine Hepburn role), with Rod Lurie writing the script.

This news comes from Production Weekly's Twitter feed, which, given the format, didn't have any other information to offer. Marshall, who has recently directed a series of awful chick flicks and has the mega-romantic-comedy Valentine's Day coming up, is also responsible for Pretty Woman and Beaches, let us remember. And despite the femme-centric nature of his work, he's got more in common with Capra than you might assume-- a love for stories about everyday people called upon to do great things, sharp comedic timing, and a basic assumption that people will do right when given the chance (hey, even Lindsay Lohan came around in Georgia Rule).

Based on plot descriptions available online, State of the Union seems to fit squarely within the Capra ouevre, skewering big business and greedy politicians in order to celebrate commitment to family and ideals. It's a theme that might sound hokey these days, but Lurie has made it his bread and butter in films like The Contender and Nothing but the Truth (which, I admit, I still found kinda hokey). The pieces all seem to be lined up to make this a worthy Capra tribute-- I mean, Bening and Gere are no Hepburn and Tracy, but who is? The question just remains whether a movie about a Republican candidate selling out to big business interests can seem at all surprising these days.
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