An unkind cut

Posted by · 10:00 am · May 6th, 2009

Scarlett JohanssonPoor Scarlett Johansson can’t seem to catch a break these days. With her acting talents currently experiencing a bit of a fallow period (I’m being gentle, I’m a fan), the snark patrol have now seized on her burgeoning directorial ambitions too.

The source of their glee is the news (a few days old, but I only saw it now) that the short film Johansson directed for the upcoming portmanteau movie “New York, I Love You” (a follow-up to 2006’s “Paris, je t’aime”) has been dropped from the thematically linked collection, which features contributions from such oddly matched talents as Fatih Akin, Natalie Portman and, uh, Brett Ratner.

Unnamed “sources” (yeah, I’ll bet) claims it’s because the film is “unwatchable,” while others say the film — which stars Kevin Bacon as an obsessive-compulsive on a day out in Coney Island — simply doesn’t fit the project’s romantic brief. Producer Emmanuel Benbihy, meanwhile, offers this diplomatic explanation:

The story did not specifically involve an interpersonal relationship, and it was conceptualised to be filmed in black and white – both of which were extreme departures from the other films. Scarlett presented me with an extremely compelling, albeit unconventional, narrative that appeared as though it would not necessarily conform to the overall approach of the entire collective.

The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw, citing the suffocating preciousness of the Paris instalment, thinks she’s better off out of it. I have no idea, except that I’m more curious to see another facet of Johansson’s creative personality (shoot me, I kinda liked her Tom Waits album) than Brett Ratner doing a love story. Oh well.

→ 11 Comments Tags: , , , , , , | Filed in: Daily

11 responses so far

  • 1 5-06-2009 at 10:04 am

    Brian said...

    Ugh. Thanks for the pic.

  • 2 5-06-2009 at 10:31 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Heh, I aim to please.

  • 3 5-06-2009 at 11:27 am

    JAB said...

    it’s one thing for her to stand out as being the most underwhelming part of a Woody Allen movie like Vicky Cristina Barcelona, but when she is far and away the weakest part of a movie like He’s Just Not That Into You…

  • 4 5-06-2009 at 11:35 am

    Bill said...

    It sounds, oddly enough, as if her piece was too classy for the collection. Certainly nothing to snark about.

  • 5 5-06-2009 at 12:34 pm

    Jester said...

    “Snark” is the most overused word of the moment. It’s driving me insane.

  • 6 5-06-2009 at 12:35 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Guilty confession time: I quite liked “He’s Just Not That Into You.” She didn’t have much to do other than look hot — and she never misses in that department — but I don’t recall being particularly bothered by her performance.

  • 7 5-06-2009 at 12:39 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Jester: You may want to check this out, then:

  • 8 5-06-2009 at 12:41 pm

    Bill said...

    Jester: Roger Ebert has something to do with it. He wrote an interesting blog entry about exposing the snarks.

  • 9 5-06-2009 at 1:49 pm

    James D. said...

    Scarlett, when is your early 2000’s form going to return?

  • 10 5-06-2009 at 3:58 pm

    The InSneider said...

    Paris je’Taime was torture and I bet the NY version will be nearly as torturous, only without subtitles. ScarJo, walk away with your head held high baby.

  • 11 5-07-2009 at 5:06 am

    Glenn said...

    How strange, since the Paris one was filled with thematically off pieces like Vincenzo Natali’s vampire piece or Sylvain Chomet’s mime bit (the latter of which was probably my second favourite after Payne’s but the former was dreadful).