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A group of unique directors and the essential works that you've got to see.

||| Joseph L. Mankiewicz |||
Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Mankiewicz directed 20 films in a 26-year period, and was very successful at every kind of film, from Shakespeare to western, drama to musical, epics to two-character pictures, and regardless of the genre, he was known as a witty dialogist, a master in the use of flashback and a talented actors' director.

The 1950 Oscar for Best Picture and Screenplay brought Mankiewicz wide recognition as a writer and a director, with his sardonic look at show business glamour and the empty lives behind it. This well orchestrated cast of brilliant and catty character actors is built around veteran actress Bette Davis and Anne Baxter as her understudy desperate for stardom.

One of Mankiewicz’ more intimate films, this highly regarded and major artistic achievement is a spirited romantic comedy set in England of the 1880’s about a widow who moves into a haunted seashore house and resists the attempts of a sea captain specter to scare her away. This is a pleasing and poignant romance that is equally satisfying as a good old ghost story.

Mankiewicz wrote and directed this witty dissection of matrimony that has three women review the ups and downs of their marriages (with all its romance, fears and foibles) after receiving a letter telling them that one of their husbands has been unfaithful. Once again Mankiewicz deftly utilizes the skills of a well-chosen ensemble, which includes a young Kirk Douglas at his dreamiest.

Recommended by CarrieSpecht

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More Details Emerge on "House of Wax" Remake

By EdwardHavens

January 27th, 2004

Further details are now emerging on Robert Zemeckis and Joel Silver's remake of the 1953 film "House of Wax," which is scheduled to begin mid-April in Australia. The feature will be directed by first-time filmmaker Jaume Serra, the Dark Castle-financed project will be presented in 3-D. Little has been known about the film outside of a three-line summary released earlier this year…until now.


According to casting documents obtained by FilmJerk.com, the film will now follow the mandatory 21st-century horror formula of featuring a hot young female as the lead. This time around, her name will be Carly Foster. An intelligent and driven college student, Carly is on the verge of leaving the Midwest and heading to New York, where she hopes to get a job writing for Cosmopolitan Magazine. The "perfect kid" in the Foster family, Carly often quarrels with her younger, grungier brother Nick. Although she and her boyfriend Wade are going through a rocky time in their relationship, Carly agrees to join a caravan of friends traveling though Iowa to attend a football game. When the fanbelt breaks on Wade's immaculate 1968 GTO muscle car, the group must stop in the quiet town of Athelston in the hopes of find a replacement part. With directions from a creepy, knife-obsessed guy with a collection of roadkill tails dangling around the interior of his truck, the group heads over to the only open business in town, a gas station operated by a handsome bad boy named Bo. The group of friends will need to rely on each other, as they slowly discover Bo is a madman, hell-bent on adding the group to his House of Wax.

All of the lead parts are now being cast. Nick is described as a nineteen year old who has everything but his act together. A grungy kid in a t-shirt, with an attitude and a thick chip on his shoulder, Nick regards his sister as a judgmental Miss Priss who always gets what she wants. A bouncer in a bar who loves to complain, Nick deeply cares for his sister beneath his tough-punk facade. When they both find themselves trapped in the nightmare town of Athelston, Nick uses his brains and his courage to help protect Carly's life.

Twenty-two years old, hip and striking, Wade Keitel is the one who first figures out Bo is actually a deranged lunatic, in murderous cahoots with his deformed and insane brother Vincent. A guy who loves scary stuff, at least until it gets in his face, Wade gets more than he bargained for when they get into Athelston.

Bo is solidly built, handsome in that bad boy way, with black eyes you'll never forget, Bo runs the local gas station in the quiet little town of Athelston, Iowa. He agrees to sell Wade a new fan belt for his car, but it's all a lie, designed to lure Wade and his friends deeper into his web of death. He's listed as being in his early 30s.

Joining the trip are: Paige Edwards, a fun and spunky hometown student from the University of Nebraska; Blake Hawthorn, Paige's soon-to-be fiancé whose relationship is free-wheeling and sexual; and Dalton Green, Nick's buddy and sidekick always adorned in a ratty Metallica tank shirt over his rail thin torso.

What aren't we telling you? Don't read any further if you don't want to know: : Bo is not alone in his doings, receiving help from his horribly deformed twin brother Vincent, as well as from Lester, the stranger the kids got directions from after Wade's car breaks down, who is the younger brother of the twins. And of the six in the caravan, only two will survive.

The Scorecard
Director: Jaume Serra
Writers: Chad Hayes and Carey Hayes
Producers: Joel Silver and Robert Zemeckis
Casting Directors: Mary Gail Artz and Barbara Cohen
Production Companies: Dark Castle, Village Roadshow, Warner Brothers
Production Start Date: Mid April
Shooting Locations: Australia