Sundance Stars Declare Inde-pendence

Sundance Stars Declare Inde-pendence

by JOE NEUMAIER

01/18/2013

Sundance

stars declare

indie-pendence

S undance is, at a certain point,

all about risks. Fledgling fi lmmakers

put it all on the line to

get their movies accepted to

the Park City, Utah, festival.

Studios take a chance on acquiring

titles that play big here and, hopefully,

will do the same in general release. Attendees

choose from dozens of features

to find the ones that will resonate.

But big Hollywood stars take risks,

too, and often the chance they take

when doing an indie flick at Sundance

can create big payoffs.

This year, a few major actors and actresses

have a lot riding on films and roles

that could boost them in innumerable ways.

Among the women, Rooney Mara is looking

to Sundance for some indie cred after

a pair of high-profile movies. Though the

27-year-old member of the New York Giantsowning

Mara family had a bit role in "The

Social Network" and was Oscar-nominated

for "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," her

work before that was, at best, low-key.

"Ain't Them Bodies Saints" puts Mara

in a new light, as half of an outlaw couple

in Texas. Casey Affleck is her beloved and

partner in crime. If the movie clicks as a

modern-day "Badlands," the actress could

be sitting in the catbird's seat.

Looking to fly well above the radar is

Amanda Seyfried, now being seen in "Les

Miserables." Her portrayal of the late pornstar-

turned-activist Linda Lovelace in

"Lovelace" is generating a lot of curiosity.

The role of the "Deep Throat" star was

once slated for Lindsay Lohan.

When that- shocker!

- didn't happen, Seyfried

jumped in. She's never car-

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ried a film and needs a movie

that spotlights more than

just her big eyes. This daring

role in the movie from directors

Rob Epstein and Jeffrey

Friedman might do the trick.

Nicole Kidman is in a different spot. The

Oscar-winning superstar is hardly ever

given credit for the small films she chooses

and champions (she's done far more of them

than big-budget mainstream flicks) . But

films like last year's "The Paperboy" backfire.

So "Stoker," a macabre drama, could

help her associate with quality indies.

Among men, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has

made a savvy move. After playing a cop

who's also the future of the Batman series

in "The Dark Knight Rises," anchoring a

cool sci-fi movie ("Looper") and starring

in the fast, fun "Premium Rush," he's written

and directed "Don Jon's Addiction,"

about a suave ladies' man and

porn fiend.

If anyone can pull this off

without any "ewww!" factor, it's Gordon-

Levitt. (Remember "Hesher"? or

"50/50"? Challenging movies, topnotch

performances.) And with Scarlett

Johansson coming along for the

ride, "Don Jon" might be addictive.

Daniel Radcliffe's turn in "Kill

Your Darlings" also could go south

- or pay off big.

Unlike films like

"December Boys"

or "The Woman

in Black," this one

is a stretch for the

former Harry Potter.

He's playing the

gay, nasally voiced,

East Coast-y Allen

Ginsberg - who, by the way, was also

a character in a movie last year ("On

the Road") and played by James Franco

two years ago (in "Howl"). If audiences

swoon instead of howl, Radcliffe, at 23,

may really arrive.

Finally, there's Ashton Kutcher, a guy not

known for serious acting roles at all. But

"iJobs," in which the "Two and a Half Men"

star gives a make-or-break performance

as Steve Jobs, might reverse his fortune. It

helps that there's a physical resemblance between

the late Apple genius and the ex-Mr.

Demi Moore. It also helps that Sundance,

like everyone, loves an underdog.

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Don Jon´s Addiction

New York Daily News

Joe Neumaier

Fri, Jan 18, 2013

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