Coen Brothers Talk Casting and Storyline for True Grit Remake
Just yesterday we tipped you off about the recent talks of Matt Damon and Josh Brolin joining Jeff Bridges in the Coen Brothers remake of the classic 1969 western True Grit that starred John Wayne. After it was announced IGN took it upon themselves to get this info straight from the horse's mouth, and the Coens went even further to offer up some more details on the story and poke a little fun at the entertainment trades (Variety / Hollywood Reporter). On the casting announcements, without hesitation, Joel Coen said: "Yes. Jeff, Matt and Josh, that's true -- something that you read in the trades that actually turns out to be true!"
What the trades haven't seemed to pick up or clarify, however, is the presentation style that this story will take on and how it is different from the original film in its more accurate portrayal of the source material (the 1968 Charles Portis novel of the same name). So in the interview, Ethan decided to clear things up:
"It's partly a question of point-of-view. The book is entirely in the voice of the 14-year-old girl. That sort of tips the feeling of it over a certain way. I think [the book is] much funnier than the movie was so I think, unfortunately, they lost a lot of humour in both the situations and in her voice. It also ends differently than the movie did. You see the main character -- the little girl -- 25 years later when she's an adult."
"Another way in which it's a little bit different from the movie -- and maybe this is just because of the time the movie was made -- is that it's a lot tougher and more violent than the movie reflects. Which is part of what's interesting about it."
The Coens definitely have enough experience in injecting some gratuitous violence into the most serene landscapes (Fargo, No Country for Old Men) so we can see how this is a comfortable fit for the directing duo. Joel went on to comment on how he doesn't recall the film capturing the quirks that the book contains:
"I don't actually remember the movie too well, but I do remember it as being much more of a standard western, and the book is just an oddity. It's a very odd book."
Oddities, violence and the Coens. Sounds like a triple threat and I just can't wait to see the first frames of film once it goes into production. From the sounds of it, the Coens will be going all the way back to the book for their adaptation, focusing more on the violence and the comedy, less on the John Wayne side of things. Even though they may not win an Oscar this year (though they definitely deserve to win for A Serious Man), the Coens are certainly still at the top of their game making movie after moving with no break. And it sounds like True Grit is already something to look forward to. We'll keep you updated on any further developments.