Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Horses, books and films - news, not-so-news, and just plain stretching

Steven Spielberg acquires the rights to Michael Morpurgo's 1982 YA novel War Horse. It has already seen dramatic life as a stage play.

The Coen brothers are remaking the 1969 John Wayne cowboy film True Grit, based on the novel by Charles Portis, and looking to cast an unknown cowgirl in the lead.

The casting directors are looking for real (scrubbed down, no make-up), "gritty" girls. Preferably the kind that ride horses, get dirty & speak their mind," the casting notes said. "They are not looking for theatrical "model" types. Rodeo girls (who ride & rope) are a plus. Not looking for pageant queens."
Tulsa Today

Can't "gritty" girls ever ride horses, get dirty and maintain a dignified reserve? Do they always have to be plain-talkin' too?

A clip from the original film:

and an irresistibly funny preview of same:

The Penny Chenery biopic Secreteriat is now due out in October. Here's a clip of the equine star and his trainer (also seen is RJ, the star of Hidalgo)

Scary-loud producer Jerry Bruckheimer and just-plain-scary studio Disney bought the rights to Doug Stanton's nonfiction book Horse Soldiers. The account of the Special Forces soldiers who briefly returned the world's most powerful military force to the days of the cavalry while fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan got great reviews. The film version lingers in development limbo.

Stanton discussing his book:

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