Thursday, May 16, 2024

Meryl to produce and star in new book-to-screen adaptation?

Meryl is of course in Cannes, and a video of an interview she did was released today. I skipped through a couple of parts because I've heard her talk about several of the things that she was asked. But one little snippet really made me perk up. Listen from 31:35 to 32:16. 


She talks about how she waits for scripts to come to her (we've heard her mention this many times), and that she "doesn't produce things," she doesn't "buy books" to develop into movies. But then she stops herself and says "Although...I think I just did recently. Something that's in development." 

Wow. To be fair, we don't know for sure if she's even talking about something that she would expect to star in herself, but I get the sense that it would be. And saying something is "in development" could mean that we never hear about it and it never sees the light of day. But I'm excited at the thought of 1) Meryl starring in something new and 2) that it might be something that she read and thought "I need to snatch this story up!"  

Had I been the interviewer I of course would have asked whether or not she could share the name of the book. I imagine it would've landed the book a bunch of quick sales. Looking forward to see if we ever get to find out what it is!

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Streep in serious talks for "Mamma Mia!" 3

This was not the immediate news I was hoping to get out of Cannes. Baz Bamigboye at Deadline interviewed Meryl and got the most specific information about the rumors of her signing on for a third round of Mamma Mia! that we heard thus far. Meryl was quoted as saying that "of course I want to do it. I don’t know how they’re going to do it. They have an idea. I haven’t heard it yet but it’s in [my diary] and I’m going to hear about it pretty soon." Her agent Kevin Huvane then added that they were "optimistic" about it. 

Fine. I'm getting pretty desperate to see Meryl in something new and interesting. This is definitely not it. But as always, I'm in favor of Meryl doing something, and if there are talks for this movie, maybe there are talks for others. At the very least, it's pretty obvious that Meryl has no immediate plans for retiring from the screen altogether. Would a Mamma Mia! trilogy be so bad as part of her film legacy? I guess not. Hell, maybe the third time will be the charm. The second installment was technically a better film, but Meryl was in it so little. Hopefully, if this moves forward, Meryl will have a big part, and it will be both high quality and entertaining. 


Season 4 of "Only Murders in the Building" set for August 27 premiere

Deadline is reporting that season 4 of Only Murders in the Building will premiere on Hulu on August 27. A trailer was released last night with the news. 


The gang heads to Los Angeles after an offer comes in to make a movie out of their podcast. The latest season's cast is by far the most star-studded, with Melissa McCarthy being revealed as the latest addition. There was a tiny snippet of Meryl's character Loretta dressed in a fancy black gown, suggesting that she has hit the big time in the city of Angels. 

I maintain that Meryl's role seems smaller than in season 3. I wouldn't be devastated if that were the case. Following her seemingly very well-received appearance in Cannes, it sort of feels like momentum may be building for us to hear an announcement soon of a new and exciting project. A boy can dream. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Streep receives honorary Palme d'Or in Cannes

Meryl was on hand at the 77th Cannes Film Festival earlier today to receive an honorary Palme d'Or.

 

She's looking amazing at the photo call in her white suit. Later on the red carpet...


French actress Juliette Binoche then presented Meryl with the award. 


It was so touching how emotional Juliette got when giving her speech. It's always interesting to me when learning of other actors who have been so impacted by Meryl's work and artistry. I feel that's a big testament to the quality of Meryls work: the fact that top-notch actors often revere her or single her out as the best. There are few better measures of how good someone is at their profession that polling others who do it (especially those who do it well), and those people say "this person" is great. 

I like that Meryl commented something to the effect of "It's nice to see that you're not sick of seeing my face." Of course my brain always goes to hoping that we'll get to see her in more and more projects. There's no question in my mind that there's an adoring audience for it. Maybe this is all part of sort of whetting the public's appetite for seeing her in something great. And hopefully soon. Is it too much to hope that she's able to do some really good networking while in France? 

Regardless, congratulations Meryl!

Thursday, May 2, 2024

Streep to receive honorary Palme d'Or at Cannes Film Festival

Multiple sources are reporting that Meryl will be presented with an honorary Palme d'Or at the Cannes International Film Festival later this month. Streep's last visit to Cannes was when she was awarded the Best Actress prize for 1988's A Cry in the Dark. The award will be presented on the first night of the festival. 

Honors like this help to bolster the public perception of Meryl's greatness, which I hope only adds to the likelihood that she'll continue to be offered (and be interested in taking) worthwhile projects well into the future. It'll be fun if we get a video of the ceremony. The festival runs May 14-25. Congratulations, Meryl!




Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Wish list #13: Madeleine Albright

While it's been fun to see Meryl out and about as of late (I'll wait to post until we get a high-quality video of her presenting at Nicole Kidman's AFI tribute), we Streepers continue to mourn the dearth of screen projects in the pipeline. Yes, we have the fourth season of Only Murders in the Building coming up later this year, but that's pretty small potatoes when considering the heft of projects we're used to getting from her. Speculations on whether or not she's semi or fully retiring abound. I'm in the camp of believing that she's very likely going to continue to act, and that she's simply waiting on her next project to get underway and to be announced. So, in the meantime, I'll continue to post about Meryl's roles that only live in my head. One of these days we'll all get pleasantly surprised when she ends up being announced in something I or we have predicted, sort of like The Post

In early 2022, I posted a series of six suggestions of adaptations of novels that I thought would be reasonable fits for Meryl to star. Around that time, I also posted a poll of whom readers would most like to see Meryl portray in a biopic. Eleanor Roosevelt, Greta Garbo, and Jane Goodall were the top three. While any of those would be wonderful, I'm adding another to the list. 

A few months ago, I read a book about people who grew up in North Korea, some who eventually escaped (Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea). I followed that with Madeleine Albright's memoir Madam Secretary. I was interested in the latter primarily because of Albright's visit to North Korea in the last year of her tenure as the first female Secretary of State of the United States. Albright was around 63 during the visit, but pictures suggest that Meryl would likely have no issue believably portraying her if a project came together within the next few years. 


Albright with North Korean leader, Kim Jong Il



Albright was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, and emigrated to the U.S. with her family when she was 11. With a life and career as long as hers, I think it would be interesting to focus on a specific period, like the one in 2000 where she went to North Korea on a state visit. It's often difficult for me to believe that societies like North Korea still exist. It's rarely depicted in media and onscreen, and it would be a fascinating event to depict. Just the scene where they held a welcome spectacle in a stadium that fit 100,000 people would be an incredible scene to create. 

I find it interesting to consider the possibility that if Donald Trump is frighteningly reelected this November, a film depicting a woman diplomat visiting a dictatorship would have it's own sort of chilling parallel to our times. That is, after all, what Trump aspires to...being a "supreme leader" in the vein of tyrants like Kim and Trump's role model, old Vlad Putin. 

Albright is in her own right a sometimes divisive and controversial figure (military tactics, religion, her role and comments during the Kosovo War). But a biopic is never interesting if you're depicting someone who was perfect. I, for one, would be the first in line to buy a ticket to see Streep in a film tackling all of Albrights strengths and weaknesses. Who else is better at getting to the heart of someone's humanity than Meryl? 



Thursday, April 11, 2024

Streep eyed for "The Thursday Murder Club" film?

An article caught my eye today from World of Reel, suggesting that Meryl had been set to star in a Steven Spielberg-directed film adaptation of Richard Osman's novel, The Thursday Murder Club. This was complete news to me, as was the idea that Viola Davis was going to co-star. I didn't immediately think I would blog about because it seemed like such an off-hand possibility. Diving in a little deeper, however, my interest has been piqued. 

First off, the book (now a series of four, with a fifth set for release in 2025) is completely unknown to me. I'm often on the hunt for stories that involve seniors, and I've made several of my own suggestions on novels that portray interesting characters of an age demographic for which Meryl would be suitable. Those are and will continue to be harder and harder to come by. Reading a brief background of the story, it does seem that Meryl would be suitable for one if not two roles. 

Right of the bat I sort of thought "ugh this sounds too much like Only Murders in the Building," much like how I may have rolled my eyes when news of Places,Please came out on the heels of Prom. The novel follows four British seniors in a retirement community ("pensioners") who form a club to solve old murders, only to find someone close by who dies mysteriously. Gasp! Honestly, at this point, I'd just love to have real news of a new project for Meryl. And it does sound like a potentially interesting character. From Penguin Random House description of main character, Elizabeth:

Elizabeth Best is an ex-spy, resident at Cooper Chase Retirement Village and founder of the Thursday Murder Club. Elizabeth doesn’t play games, and if her experience in espionage has taught her anything, it’s how to get what she wants. The driving force of the Thursday Murder Club’s antics, Elizabeth spearheads their investigations. Even in her old age, Elizabeth is just as strong and fiery as ever, regularly employing tactics of intimidation and deception to get the info she wants. Despite her tough-as-nails exterior, however, Elizabeth’s vulnerable side comes out in her personal life as she deals with the reality of her husband’s dementia.

So, despite the theme/setting surrounding seniors solving crimes, Meryl's actual character would be very different from that of Loretta in OMITB. Another article from earlier this year had an interview with Osman, where he indicated that filming was postponed due to the actors' strike, but is on schedule to film this August. He was not at liberty to say who was cast or being considered to be cast, but he was previously quoted as joking that Meryl sends him Facebook messages asking to be in a film adaptation of the movie, only to then add that "If Meryl said she wanted to be in it I would not be saying no." Interesting additional fact: Spielberg is no longer set to direct, with Ol Parker taking the reigns instead, who just happened to direct Meryl (albeit very briefly) in Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again

The is widely popular, so having that built-in interest would be a nice boon for the film's potential success. It'll be fun to keep an eye out for this.