The Tourist Gets a Director

October 19, 2009

Ever since Angelina Jolie climbed onboard The Tourist it's been getting the fast track at Spyglass Entertainment. Jolie only wanted to be part of the film if the right director was behind the camera, and it looks like she found her director.

Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, the guy who directed the German Academy award-winning film The Lives of Others, is going to be calling the shots on The Tourist.

Variety says that:

While von Donnersmarck hasn't formally entered into negotiations yet, studios are expected to begin jockeying for the film that is likely to be ready for a 2011 release. ...Jolie...will play a female Interpol agent who draws an unwitting American tourist into her attempt to locate a criminal who was once her lover. Worthington, the Australian thesp who next appears as the star of the James Cameron-directed "Avatar," will play the American tourist.

The story doesn't exactly smack of originality, but in the right hands any material can be good material. It sounds like Tourist is going to be one part Duplicity and one part The International -- minus Clive Owen, and hopefully much better than either of those movies.

Ever since Jolie signed onto the film it's been getting the royal treatment and it looks like we'll actually be seeing it before the end of the century. It says a lot about the project that she put it on her schedule ahead of Wanted 2, and it says a lot about her intelligence, too. The prospect of a second Wanted movie with Jolie's character still alive is absurd, at best. But hey, that's Hollywood.

So does the addition of a foreign director spell success or disaster for this movie? It can't hurt to have someone from outside the system behind the camera of a major studio film. Hopefully Doonersmarck brings an element of originality and insight that a Hollywood player wouldn't.

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