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Reese Witherspoon will star in Devil’s Knot, the Atom Egoyan-directed drama about the West Memphis 3. As Deadline revealed just after the West Memphis 3 murder defendants were released from prison August 19, The Sweet Hereafter and Chloe director Egoyan came aboard to direct a script that was originally written by Scott Derrickson and Paul Boardman, the team behind The Exorcism Of Emily Rose. Witherspoon will play Pam Hobbs, the mother of one of the murder victims who initially believes the trio murdered her son, but she is eventually persuaded that the three suspects are innocent and wrongly accused. Filming begins next summer.
Egoyan has spent the last six weeks working with Boardman on a rewrite. The script is based on investigative reporter Mara Leveritt’s 2003 book Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three, an in-depth chronicle of the sensationalized trials that sent the three to prison for the murder of the three 8-year old boys who were found hog-tied in a drainage ditch. The project is not a rush job. Derrickson and Boardman began writing it in 2006 when the film first took root at Dimension Films. It will be produced by Elizabeth Fowler, Clark Peterson, Richard Saperstein and Boardman. Saperstein was Dimension president and he acquired the film. After he left, Dimension eventually put the project into turnaround and Saperstein became re-involved as producer. The package includes life rights deals with some of the figures in the case, and especially Ron Lax, a private investigator who has been working pro bono on trying to overturn the verdict since 1993. There are no rights deals with the West Memphis 3 defendants Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley Jr because at the time, two were serving life sentences and Echols was on death row. The plan is to finance the film independently, but the filmmakers might well make a domestic distribution deal before getting underway.
Glamour Reese Witherspoon would like to wish you all, and Reese and her loved ones, a very Merry Christmas! I hope your holidays are filled with shiny presents, yummy food, and most importantly of all, a lot of Christmas joy!
“I make my mother’s champagne punch, which is basically just champagne and ginger ale. Everybody has too much to drink and sings loudly. It’s fun! We watch the kids rip through their presents. They have the best time.” – Reese on her Christmas traditions
Just a small update today – I’ve added another 60+ photos from the This Means War re-shoots that we had pics from earlier this month. In some of these photos we can see Reese filming additional scenes with co-stars Chelsea Handler, Tom Hardy and Chris Pine.
Updates will likely be slow/non-existent from now up until Christmas, due to the busy holiday season! However, I will be adding more film screencaptures plus new/additional content asap after Xmas Day itself (if not sooner, depending on time!). I’m hoping I might have time to get in a few Christmas-sy Reese treats too!
A few celebrities in the press promoting new works have mentioned Reese as one of their favourites recently!
Taylor Swift: In the Dec. 10 issue of Billboard magazine, where Swift covers the magazine as it’s Woman of the Year, she says, “I have a lot of role models. Faith Hill is a big role model. Reese Witherspoon is a role model of mine – she’s not in music, but I love everything she stands for. Shawn Colvin is a huge role model for me. Her writing has been consistently great and thoughtful…” (huffingtonpost.com)
Abigail Breslin: In exchange for the honor, we asked the star to tell us which Hollywood ladies she admires. “I really like Reese Witherspoon. Anne Hathaway, I really like,” she said. “I love all their work.” (mtv.com)
Jane Fonda: THR: Whom do you most admire in Hollywood? Fonda: Interestingly enough, one of the women I’ve always admired is Sherry Lansing. I got to know her when I was at Columbia Pictures working on a film about nuclear energy that Michael Douglas produced, The China Syndrome. Her grace on the job, her kindness, the generosity of her spirit — they all really, really struck me, which is one of the reasons that I’m so excited about getting this award. I also very much admire Helen Mirren, Vanessa Redgrave and Meryl Streep, who did her first movie, Julia, with me. I’m probably one of the very first people who ever saw her onscreen. I just am in total awe of her! She’s beyond anything one could ever imagine an actor to be. There’s so much talent out there — female talent of all ages, and I just love watching them all work. Whether it’s Reese Witherspoon or one of my favorites, Annette Bening. (hollywoodreporter.com)
Looks like they are doing some last minute re-shoots on This Means War, as Reese was snapped back on set in Los Angeles a couple of days ago! Reese is seen laughing and gesturing whilst standing outside a building by a yellow car, wearing a black top and trousers with a brown leather jacket. I wonder what they are re-shooting and why!
This Means War is scheduled for release in the US on February 17th 2012.