John Cusack, Julianne Moore, and regular Sarah Gadon have joined the cast of David Cronenberg’s Hollywood-set satirical supernatural thriller(!?!), Maps To The Stars. They will accompany the already-cast Robert Pattinson through a scathing look at the film industry on a journey that includes ruined child actors and ghosts. Some might say Cronenberg is going weird again to shut up the fans who have been disappointed with his more recent efforts, but that would be a bad assumption. Ole Dave Deprave has had his eye on the Bruce Wagner (Wild Palms) script for almost a decade now and has finally managed to get it up and running. Rachel Weisz and Dave fave Viggo Mortensen were both previously announced as being involved, but their lack of mention in the recent release leads me to believe that they were forced to drop out once the start date this year was pushed back from May to July.
Moving on, this will mark the first time that David Cronenberg has ever shot a film in the United States. Also, given its apparent focus on celebrity-obsessed culture, it might be interesting to double-feature it with his son’s similarly-themed debut, Antiviral. Will Maps To The Stars excite Cronenberg’s fanbase again? Who knows. While I can’t comment on A Dangerous Method or Cosmopolis because I have seen neither, the current backlash against A History of Violence and Eastern Promises that I have encountered within the cinephile community baffles me.
For better or worse, Cronenberg has always done his own thing as a filmmaker and has almost always done it extremely well. I find his commitment to make only films he is interested in doing beyond admirable and it has lead to a body of work that has managed to avoid the pitfalls encountered by his ’80s horror brethren thus far. Even if you don’t take to every project he has produced, you would be hard pressed to argue that any of them aren’t interesting. As for his abandonment of the body horror that helped earn him the love and appreciation of the horror community? He knew when it was time to move on. A filmmaker changing direction has always been a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” scenario, so kudos to him for taking the road less traveled. Besides, it looks like his spawn has picked up that mantle and is making a nice run with it so far.
Source | Variety