Will 'Gravity' Be Sandra Bullock's 'Aeon Flux'?
By Jo Piazza Posted Dec 21st 2010 04:00PM
One trend Oscar watchers have noted is the Best Actress winner taking a big payday on a not so great movie following her big Oscar win, perhaps to capitalize on an initial Oscar bump and the good will of her peers. The rule of thumb is that it is OK to make a stinker if you just walked away with a little gold man.
After Halle Berry won the award in 2001 for her performance in Monster's Ball she took on the lead in the onscreen adaptation of 'Catwoman,' for which she received a reported $14 million paycheck and a Razzie. After Charlize Theron won the award in 2003 for 'Monster' she accepted a role in the post-apocalyptic sci-fi stinker 'Aeon Flux,' with a reported pay day of $10 million. (The movie only made $25 million at the box office).
Now last year's best actress winner Sandra Bullock is slated to star in 'Gravity,' the story of two survivors of a space station explosion (the result of a wayward asteroid). Bullock is expected to portray a mother who is determined to return to her young child back on earth. George Clooney is reported to star opposite Bullock, replacing Robert Downey Jr., who bowed out due to scheduling difficulties.
Downey Jr. isn't the only A-lister to back off this project. Angelina Jolie, Scarlett Johansson, Marion Cotillard and Natalie Portman also reportedly bowed out of the 3D project for various reasons.
It looks like the movie is a go for now and will start filming this spring, giving Sandy plenty of time to finish filming the Stephen Daldry drama, 'Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,' with Tom Hanks.
But there is no telling which film will actually be in the can and reach audiences first, begging the question, will 'Gravity' be Bullock's 'Aeon Flux'? Will we see her collect yet another Razzie? And if so, why would Sandy and George take it on?
"The 'Gravity' script is a good one, much better than it sounds when described in a couple of lines in a news story where it admittedly sounds like sci-fi crap," one studio exec who has read the script tells PopEater. "It is actually a very human story about a woman with a very serious mission."
Still, it remains a diversion for Bullock who typically shines in comedic fare and more recently dramas that are a little closer to home. But the glow of an Oscar can make anyone believe they are invincible.
"I don't think any actor who actually has the means to be choosey purposely chooses a bad movie," says Paul Dergarabedian, President of the box-office division of Hollywood.com. "I do think that recent Oscar winners feel impervious to the usual rules that apply. I think they feel invincible. What they need to remember is that the American people have a short memory. One year you can do Academy-Award winning work and the next do a bad movie. People will remember the bad movie."
There's no telling if 'Gravity' will be a 3D out of this world flop or a masterpiece. At the end of the day if it stars Sandy and George in three dimensions, it can't be a complete wash.
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