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We all know the phenomenon: there are movies out there that we'd love to see, but do not get their financing sorted. Some directors are just not lucky enough, some seem to be cursed (cough-Gilliam-cough), but sometimes directors just aren't considered to be "hot" or "marketable" enough to place a big financial risk on.
So what I'd want to explore in this ScreenAnarchy-O-Meter is the following.
What if some bored billionaire philanthropist just phones someone and says:
"I like what you're doing. Here is 100.000.000 USD, no questions asked.
Spend it all on your movie.
Have fun, no further interference from me, but make it a good one!"
Which directors would I want this to happen to?
Well, me of course, if my holiday home-movies count...
But here are five others, after the break.... Some are experienced, some are as yet unproven, some actually have worked with similar budgets before (but under restraints...), some probably do not even know what a big pile of money LOOKS like.
Here they are in no particular order!
Everybody who doesn't want to see "Worst Case Scenario" please raise your chainsaw!
The big question here is of course if Richard has the talent to make a watchable film after having been given the money. But the two brilliant trailers he shot for his nazi-zombie epic makes me salivate when I think what he could do with his current projects with all possible financial troubles out of the way. Be it the indefinitely shelved "Worst Case Scenario" or the tentatively probed possibilities of "Army of Frankenstein", I very much would like to know if Raaphorst could rise to the challenge of becoming a great filmmaker, or if he'd be forgotten within a year with a nasty clunker on his resumee...
Less doubts here about whether or not this one is a great filmmaker: he is! Edgar Wright might just be one of my most favorite directors at the moment. Both "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz" are absolutely brilliant, but anyone who has seen "Spaced" just knows that something is missing here...
And that something is a BIG EPIC SPACE OPERA!
It makes sense: so many jokes in "Spaced" showed Edgar Wright's and Simon Pegg's undying love for the original Star Wars trilogy, that it would be very odd if these two do not have their own fantasies in this region. Quite probably they even have an idea for a script, but it's shelved because doing their own Star Wars-homage would be too damn expensive. I'd love to see if a shitload of money could make them go for it.
Our Dutch "dark knight" has in the past juggled a few big budgets, and every time he would be working under some weird restrictions or in a genre he has no fondness for (he actually hates science fiction, believe it or not).
What if this mad genius would be allowed to go nuts with just his own preferences and a hundred million bucks? What dark fantasies, what adult content would be unlocked when there is no fear for the "X-rated"?
Judging by the high rating "Stingray Sam" got at the Imagine Festival in Amsterdam, Cory McAbee is able to make incredibly entertaining cinema for an incredibly low budget. When people start to sing along with the music during the film you KNOW you're doing something special.
I just can't fathom what Cory McAbee would do with a big budget. I just can't!
But I think it would be ever so much fun to find out...
You saw this one coming, didn't you? It doesn't matter if he makes a masterpiece, a flawed masterpiece or a very flawed masterpiece, Terry Gilliam shows time and time again he is one of the strongest visual artists in the world today. And for good measure you can chunk a couple of decades on top of "today", and that statement still would be true.
Yet Gilliam is constantly hit with calamities ranging from open warfare with his own studio, to bad weather, to actors getting sick (and just when you thought THAT couldn't be topped after watching "Lost in LaMancha", well... you know what happened last summer).
Mind you, I'll take any film Gilliam makes, even if he has to cut corners and work without money. But I'd love to see him soar again, free to explore unlimited possibilities.
The problem however is, that if some billionaire WOULD actually hand over a suitcase full of money to Terry, both would probably be mugged on the spot. The billionaire would die, the money would be stolen and Terry Gilliam would be wrongfully sentenced to live imprisonment for the murder. Sigh...
Was there anyone I missed?
Sure, so feel free to share it in the comments!