Jonathan Demme owns indie family drama genre with new projects
Jonathan Demme is coming back to narrative film with Old Fires, penned by screenwriter Heather McGowan. The indie family drama, similar to Demme's previous Rachel Getting Married, is set to start production next summer. No word yet on the actors attached to it.
Meanwhile, Demme is also directing a few episodes of Enlightened for HBO and has two sci-fi projects in the works. He'll try his hand as well at producing, with Song One, starring one of his favorites, Anne Hathaway.
Since Rachel Getting Married in 2008, Demme has turned to documentaries and concert films, directing three on Neil Young: Heart of Gold, Trunk Show, and Neil Young: Journeys. Demme is not a newcomer to feature films, either. Previously he directed Philadelphia, Silence of the Lambs (for which he won the Best Director Oscar), The Truth About Charlie with Mark Wahlberg, and The Manchurian Candidate. The latter two, both questionable remakes of 1960's films with big name stars, while Rachel Getting Married was an exquisite and intimate portrait of a family -- with musicians playing live music during filming to contribute to its naturalistic quality.
Cheap (but still somehow big budget) remakes were what Demme was mostly making, but indie family dramas are what he's good at. Old Fires is the story of a world-renowned architect who, on coming out of a coma, must endure rehab and rebuilding his life with his family. Sounds similar to Rachel, but holds promise of at least being well-done.
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