Jonathan Demme Directing My Dinner With Andre Team In A Filmed Ibsen Play
My Dinner With Andre has always had a lingering cultural significance that far outweighed the number of people who had actually seen the movie, thanks to its reputation as a slow, low-key, arty movie that's the opposite of the usual Hollywood whiz-bang. But thanks to Community's tribute episode to the Louis Malle film, the movie is back in a weird way-- so fans of that episode where Abed and Jeff share a meal together may be excited to know that the film's stars, Wallace Shawn and Andre Gregory, are finally ready to collaborate again.
Appropriately enough for a highbrow effort between the guys who also made Vanya on 42nd Street, this news comes from The New York Times, where Shawn and Gregory announce that they'll be working together on a filmed version of the Henrik Ibsen play Master Builder. But this won't be some lavish theatrical production shot from every angle with the highest technical specs-- Shawn said they expect toss hoot the film in about a week at the East Village art club Pen and Brush. Jonathan Demme, who's no stranger to filming live performance thanks to Stop Making Sense and his other concert films, will be directing.
The film, tentatively titled Wally and Andre Shoot Ibsen, will be based on a new translation of the film from the original Norwegian, which sound about like the kind of bold move only Wallace Shawn is capable of. The Master Builder is about a, well, builder in a small town who becomes convinced he can wish for things and make them true. Shawn will be playing the lead character, naturally, which will make for his first leading film role in quite a while. Demme, Shawn and Gregory all seem confident there will be a built-in audience for the low-budget film, which is undoubtedly true-- look for a small release for this, but it's hard to imagine they'll have trouble getting it out to audiences.
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