I try not to make it my business to comment on industry news - because after all, there's nothing I know from my Orlando apartment that you can't get from any of the industry blogs that scatter the internet, but there was a juicy rumor trolling the movie sites that made me want to bite. Film director Alfonso Cuarón's latest film, a 3-D epic named Gravity has been stuck in a bit of a pre-production hell. For what it's worth, Cuarón was the man behind the masterpieces Children of Men and Y tu mamá también, but he has been stuck working on Gravity since then. The film is slated for a 2012 release, but even that does not look safe anymore. Of course, they didn't need the news that the planned star of the film, Angelina Jolie, has decided to leave the movie before shooting started. There have been many different names being passed around as a replacement, but the most prominent one seems to be Natalie Portman.
We all know that Portman is pretty hot right now, considering all the praise that Black Swan is currently getting at the Venice Film Festival (and the expected Oscar love it will get early next year). It seems that her role in the ballerina psychological thriller will finally solidify her adult acting career, since lord knows we've been witnessing her child career for what seems like forever. Ever since The Professional in 1994, we've been hoping that she could expand that talent into something very special. Sure, there were signs of that in 2004 when she had the double release of Garden State and Closer (for which she received a Supporting Actress nomination), but both those roles capitalized on her cute childishness, so they can hardly be counted as real adult performances.
So, we'll get to see her break loose in Black Swan and I think it would be fantastic if she joined forces with the obviously brilliant Cuarón for his most ambitious project yet in the years to come. Sure, Gravity also has the chance to be a stuffy, megalomaniacal sci-fi, but it has the opportunity to be truly fantastic if executed properly. Now, Portman hasn't confirmed anything, and the part has only been offered, but the early word is that she will accept. I hope that everything will come together for this project, because I'd like Cuarón to get the same amount of attention as his Mexican counterparts Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro González Iñárritu (particularly because he's immensely more talented then both of them).
Here's to hoping. It's always silly to get excited about films before they're released, let alone before production has even started, but I am. I'll have Gravity on my calender for the Fall of 2012.