LOS ANGELES, Oct 5, (RTRS): The heated rivalry between Swede Bjorn Borg and American John McEnroe is the centerpiece of a new film on the famous battles between the tennis greats both on and off the court.
“Borg/McEnroe”, starring Swedish actor Sverrir Gudnason as Borg and US actor Shia LaBeouf as McEnroe, traces the rivalry between the two tennis players at the 1980 Wimbledon final, considered to be one of the best tennis matches ever played.
It was their different styles of playing tennis as well as their temperament that made their rivalry more intense in the eyes of spectators.
Borg, then 24, was cool, calm and collected, while McEnroe, 21, was seen as tennis’ bad boy with a fiery temperament, sometimes getting into shouting matches with referees.
“I think it’s a story about two people who were seen as opposites but had more in common than most people know of and a friendship developing out of that meeting,” Danish director Janus Metz Pedersen told reporters at a news conference in Sweden on Tuesday.
Gudnason added, “They became close friends later in life and I think it’s much about them understanding each other. They have made the same journey.”
The film, currently shooting in Sweden and scheduled to debut in the fall of 2017, will also star veteran Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard as Borg’s coach Lennart Bergelin.
LaBeouf said he is “pretty confident” about the film, and hoped McEnroe would be one of the first to see the movie.
“I’m excited to show him the movie and I’m sure he’ll see it before everybody,” LaBeouf said. “We love John on this side you know. It’s been very inviting from our camp to his and we’re gonna link up eventually and I’m sure he’ll like what we did.”
Skarsgard shared his own memories of watching the match between Borg and McEnroe in the summer of 1980, which he said had gotten him hooked on the sport.
“That final quickly stopped being sport. It became huge drama and it was fantastic to see and I ended up just as interested as all sports freaks,” Skarsgard said.
Heavy metal comes to the big screen in a new documentary looking at successful rock band X Japan.
“We are X” goes behind the scenes to look at the Japanese group, formed in 1982, which defied professional setbacks and personal losses and won admirers in the likes of rock band Kiss and comic book creator Stan Lee.
“It was like a very sad story, almost too sad to be true,” X Japan co-founder and drummer Yoshiki said at the film’s Los Angeles premiere on Monday. “It was very hard for me to even say yes to create this film but now it’s kind of over … It was a very therapeutic process.”
“We Are X” will have a limited US cinema release.
Jude Law is set to star alongside Rooney Mara in Brady Corbet’s pop star drama “Vox Lux”, sources tell Variety.
“Vox Lux” follows “Celeste” as she rises from the ashes of a major national tragedy to pop superstardom. This 15-year odyssey, set between 1999 and the present day, tracks the important cultural revolutions of the 21st Century through her eyes.
Law will play Celeste’s manager in the film.
The soundtrack will feature all original songs written by Grammy-nominated artist Sia.
“Vox Lux” marks the follow-up to Corbet’s Venice Film Festival double award winner, “The Childhood of a Leader”,
The film will be shot on 65mm large-format film and exhibit on 70mm large-format film. Kodak is helping back the movie from an equity and marketing perspective.
Christine Vachon and David Hinojosa of Killer Films will produce along with Brian Young of Three Six Zero Entertainment.
Law was most recently seen in Paolo Sorrentino’s miniseries “The Young Pope”, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival and will bow on HBO in January. Law will be seen next as the villain, Vortigern, in Guy Ritchie’s “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword,” and is set to return to the London theater in an adaptation of the Luchino Visconti film “Obsession”.
Turkey is exiting the European Union’s Creative Europe program which supports the arts, including film and TV — a surprise move that comes as relations between the Turkish government and the EU become increasingly strained.
In 2015, Turkey joined the ranks of non-EU member countries allowed to tap into Creative Europe’s 1.46-billion-euro fund ($1.56 billion) to support culture and the arts between 2014 and 2020. Creative Europe incorporates the EU’s Media Program, which subsidizes production, promotion, and distribution of film, TV, and video content.
“The European Commission regrets Turkey’s decision and the fact that Turkish cultural and audiovisual operators will miss future opportunities for cooperation with their counterparts in the EU,” an EU spokeswoman. “Although this is unfortunate, the commission respects the sovereign decision of Turkey.”
The withdrawal, now under negotiation between the EU and the Turkish government, is to be effective from Jan 1, 2017.
According to Turkish daily Haberturk, the pullout is in response to a concert, supported by Creative Europe and performed in April by Germany’s Dresdner Sinfoniker orchestra, in commemoration of the Armenian genocide.
Turkey rejects use of the word “genocide” to describe the killings of more than a million Armenians and other Christian minorities by Ottoman Turks during the 1910s. The issue continues to be a sensitive one for modern Turkey: In June, the German parliament’s symbolic resolution declaring the killings a genocide sparked an angry reaction from the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
More recently, in the wake of the July 15 failed coup in Turkey, tensions between the EU and Ankara have worsened, partly because EU officials have criticized Erdogan’s heavy crackdown against the coup’s alleged plotters and sympathizers.
To date, an estimated 2.4 million euros ($2.6 million) has been allocated by Creative Europe to support Turkish films and cultural projects, including the Istanbul Film Festival’s Meetings on the Bridge co-production forum. It is unclear whether Turkey’s pullout from Creative Europe will also affect the country’s membership in European co-productions fund Eurimages, which is overseen by the Council of Europe, not by the European Union.
In any event, the withdrawal is a blow to the Turkish film industry since producers, distributors and fest and film market organizers will not be able to tap into the Media Program’s soft money. It also symbolically weakens their ties with Europe’s creative community.
“It is a very unfortunate decision,” said Basak Emre, co-director of Festival on Wheels, which promotes Turkish films. “Many artists and cultural institutions will be affected. But we do not know the details of this decision yet,” she noted.