It’s still early, but it’s official.
My friend Angelique Brunsman, director of marketing and public relations for Hollywood Blvd. Cinema in Woodridge, Ill. couldn’t wait to share the official industry-wide announcement that came this month from Universal Studios heralding the July 1, 2009 big screen arrival of the much-anticipated Johnny Depp as John Dillinger flick “Public Enemies.”
Of course, we’re all more than just a little anxious to see the final results of nearly four months of filming with local shoots that spanned from Madison, Wis. and Aurora, Ill. to Downtown Chicago, Crown Point and the Indiana Dunes.Not only are the landscapes going to look familiar on the big screen, but so will some faces.
As reported in The Times Newspaper, I joined fellow Times journalist Donald Asher, the deputy executive editor of The Times, as well as Post-Tribune editor Andrew Steele, to play one of the trio of reporters who grills Depp as Dillinger, while he’s brought into the Crown Point Jail in handcuffs to be booked and locked up.My Times reporter colleagues Joe Carlson and Yuri Victor also snagged reporter and photographer roles.
Now, here’s what’s been officially sent to theaters as the studio’s “first look” release announcement, reminding theater owners to reserve theater space next summer.
It shares a hint at the production details and the all-important star billing order.
Release Date: July 1, 2009
Studio: Unified Pictures
Director: Michael Mann
Screenwriter: Ronan Bennett and Ann Biderman
Starring: Johnny Depp , Christian Bale, David Wenham , Stephen Graham, Marion Cotillard, Channing Tatum, Giovanni Ribisi, Stephen Dorff, Adam Mucci, Billy Crudup, Stephen Lang, Shawn Hatosy, Emilie de Ravin, James Russo and Leelee Sobieski.
Genre: Crime, Drama
MPAA Rating: Not Available
Official Website: Not Available
Review: Not Available
DVD Review: Not Available
DVD: Not Available
Movie Poster: Not Available
Production Stills: Not Available
Plot Summary: An adaptation of Brian Burrough’s book “Public Enemies: America’s Greatest Crime Wave and the Birth of the FBI, 1933-43,” the film centers on the government’s attempt to stop John Dillinger and his gang. Depp is playing Dillinger to Bale’s famed FBI agent Melvin Purvis. Wenham is playing Pete Pierpont, a member of Dillinger’s crew who has a violent hostility to all authority. British actor Graham will portray Baby Face Nelson.
I’m told that even though the film is still in the midst of editing, there will be enough cleaned up and pieced together footage for theater preview trailers to be ready for theaters to begin teasing on their big screens in time for the Christmas holiday movie releases.
The final scenes for director Mann’s film “Public Enemies” were in the can on Friday, June 26, and the big wrap party was held that same night.
The buzz that night had Windy City film insiders amazed with the production values, since this $80-million flick by Universal Studios is one of the largest productions to hit the Chicago area and Northwest Indiana in recent years.
There’s also no arguing that it was an aggressive project, to say the least, considering it was only scheduled for 69 shooting days, according to Depp’s contract.
Alas, Depp didn’t attend the wrap party Mann hosted from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. at the tres chic Bon V restaurant, at 1100 Randolph St. in the Windy City’s West Loop. The name of the restaurant, which hints at the French’s way of saying “the good life,” pretty much captures the surrounding atmosphere of this 7,500-square-foot spacious playground, outfitted with ultra elegant chandeliers and owned by Casey Urlacher, brother of Chicago Bear Brian Urlacher.
Much of the chatter had to do with the final days of filming this week, including the very long marathon shoot on June 25, at a section of Wells Street near Lincoln Avenue, which was transformed into 1930s New Orleans. No Depp for that particular scene, but it did include actors Crudup as FBI head honcho J. Edgar Hoover and Ribisi as Alvin “Creepy” Karpis.Filming began early in the day and lasted well past 10 p.m.
In addition to Asher, myself and the other Times folks mentioned in earlier in the above item, also featured in select scenes are Times automotive columnist Jim Jackson, our business writer Keith Benham and features correspondent Robert Earnshaw, who all shot scenes in the film during that final busy Wednesday.
Even though the scenes I shot were filmed months earlier, I was fortunate to join Asher and his wife Donna at the cast party, along with my Times assigning editor Crista Zivanovic as my own guest to help me keep tabs on the faces and happenings around me.
Unfortunately, not everyone made the invite list for last night’s celebration.A memo sent out June 18 to departments from the production office explained the invite list criteria.Bale also missed the wrap party fun, since he was in Los Angeles doing all the media junkets and promotion for his new Batman film “Dark Knight.” I thought there might be a chance he would jet back to the Windy City for some closure from the all of the hectic yet memorable moments from his experience working with director Mann, who was, by the way, having a great time right in the thick of it all during the party.
Some of the luminaries from the film who were in attendance included Oscar winner Cotillard, rowdy Dorff and brooding Ribisi. Also, Chicago club king Billy Dec and Jeremy Piven made the rounds. There were plenty of reasons to have a good time, besides the guest list. An amazing “dirty martini” bar, featuring assorted stuffed olives, and trays of delicious bites like lamb, minted shrimp skewers and stuffed mushroom caps set the grazing scene.
Thank you gift
Arriving Aug 10 to all the principal cast members, including Asher, Steele, et all, were “thank you” gifts from director Mann. Delivered by FedEx, inside each gift box cast members found a very nice computer laptop carrying case, each one jet black and featuring the “Public Enemies” movie title embroidered on the side. Mann also included a note of “thanks” from the crew and himself, emphasizing his appreciation for the cast being so patient through entire filming marathon and “especially for putting up with the weather.”
Source: Visit Shore Magazine