Taylor Hackford Tries to Find Love Ranch a Home
by Kevin Powers
October 23, 2008
It seems odd that director Taylor Hackford would be peddling his latest project to studios like a door-to-door salesmen. The guy was behind Ray, after all, which garnered Jamie Foxx an Oscar for Best Actor; he also helmed Proof of Life, Devil's Advocate and Dolores Claiborne. In short, he seems a pretty bankable guy. So will a studio swoop in and pick up distribution rights to his indie drama Love Ranch and make this article outdated before it's published? Maybe. Hackford actually took this same approach for Ray, completing the film himself before approaching studios. We'll see if it works this time around.
Love Ranch stars the lovely Helen Mirren (The Queen) in a not-so-stately role: she plays the wife to what I can only imagine is a smarmy, dirty-old-man Joe Pesci (seen above in a photo from the film), owners of the nation's first legalized brothel in Nevada, The Mustang Ranch. The film is loosely based on true events - Mirren and Pesci portraying proprietors Sally and Joe Conforte, respectively - in which a famed boxer was shot at the ranch after supposedly having an affair with Mirren's character. The story seems intriguing and the cast is certainly worthwhile. Since it's now wrapped, we'll see which studio picks it up.
Despite what seems like an interesting approach to distributing his under-$25 million film, Hackford is confident that it will eventually sell to a good studio. "Unless a helmer is making superhero films, he's better off leading the sales charge on films he's passionate about." Anyone already interested?