If there’s a director who has been working just on the edge of the mainstream who I have most been rooting for, it has to be David Gordon Green. He’s got such a unique sensibility, even though you could easily draw comparisons between his work and that of Terence Malick (I think Green is much more emotionally available than Malick, and his work has more narrative cohesiveness, but there’s a beautiful languor they both share). Now it looks like Green’s about to hit the mainstream in a big way.
His latest film, Snow Angels, has been picked up by Warner Independent Pictures (honestly, ‘Independent’ of what?), who have also signed him on to direct The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town, an adaptation of the John Grisham true story about a poor bastard who gets sent to prison – and Death Row – for a murder he didn’t commit.
We brought you news of The Innocent Man back when it was optioned by Smoke House, the company George Clooney and buddy Grant Heslov run. It’s just like these magnificent bastards to get someone as talented as Green on board, and I can’t wait to see what kind of attention being attached to a Grisham movie – even a non-fiction lefty anti-death penalty one – will do for Green.
Of course The Innocent Man may come after general audiences get to know Green in another way – he’s set to direct The Pineapple Express, a comedy reteaming Freaks & Geeks buddies Seth Rogen and James Franco*, and produced by Comedy Don Judd Apatow (my original write-up here). If all remains on track, that film should be starting soon, or may even be underway.
*Franco makes a cameo as James Franco in Knocked Up, which I finally saw tonight and can say is completely brilliant. Look for a gushing review quite soon.