Paul Schrader & Nicolas Cage Quietly Disavowing 'Dying of the Light'
by Ethan Anderton
October 17, 2014
The first trailer for Paul Schrader's CIA thriller Dying of the Light starring Nicolas Cage just premiered this week, and it didn't look half bad. However, you might remember that when the first look photo from the film surfaced, there were rumblings that Schrader has been removed from the editing room because the movie he was trying to cut "was a completely different movie from the movie that was greenlit, the movie that was discussed and the movie that was shot." Now Schrader, along with Cage, co-star Anton Yelchin and executive producer Nicolas Winding Refn are quietly protesting the film as best they can. Read on!
Due to contractual obligations, they can't bash the movie, so they're wearing these shirts instead:
And this is what Paul Schrader posted on Facebook about the issue at hand:
"We lost the battle. 'Dying of the Light,' a film I wrote and directed, was taken away from me, redited, scored and mixed without my input. Yesterday Grindstone (a division of Lionsgate) released the poster and the trailer. They are available on line. Here we are, Nick Cage, Anton Yelchin, Nic Refn and myself, wearing our “non-disparagement” T shirts. The non-disparagement clause in an artist’s contract gives the owners of the film the right to sue the artist should the owner deem anything the artist has said about the film to be 'derogatory.' I have no comment on the film or others connected with the picture."
In case you can't read the text on those shirts above, that's the clause of the contract for their involvement in the film that says they cannot disparage or defame the film in any way. Nicolas Winding Refn has also called the producers' treatment of Schrader in this situation nothing but "artistic disrespect.” There might be two sides to this story, but if Schrader didn't have the support of Cage, Yelchin and Refn, that would be different. At the same time, it's not as if Schrader has made anything great in awhile, so perhaps producers really were blindsided by what he was trying to do in the editing room. So in the end, it sounds like Dying of the Light might not be the film Schrader wanted to make. Will you see it?