It’s all connected: Gertrude Bell, Harry Potter and more!

Deadline reports that James Franco is “circling” a role in Werner Herzog’s long-in-development Gertrude Bell biopic Queen of the Desert. The role — which was once going to be played by Jude Law — is that of Henry Cadogan, a British diplomat who met Bell when she visited Persia, or modern-day Iran, in the 1890s. Bell herself will be played by Naomi Watts.

This bit of news reminds me that I never got around to blogging the last bit of casting news around this film, when it was announced last summer that Twilight star Robert Pattinson is attached to play T.E. Lawrence, a.k.a. “Lawrence of Arabia”. I found that news kind of amusing because Pattinson has already co-starred with another actor who once played Lawrence.

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Review: Enemy at the Gates (dir. Jean-Jacques Annaud, 2001)

enemyatthegatesThese days, war movies waste no time plunging the viewer into the miserable, savage, bloody midst of combat, and Enemy at the Gates is no exception. The grime splashed on the lens, the stark and chaotic cinematography, the way the sounds of battle are toned down so we can take in the sorrowful music and pause to wonder why people do these things to each other — all the tricks that seemed so innovative in Saving Private Ryan and Gladiator are by now a familiar part of our film grammar, and they are all present and accounted for in Enemy at the Gates.

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