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Hugo continues to be extraordinarily busy of late; he completed performances in STC’s Uncle Vanya on August 27 and flew directly to Berlin, where he did preparation work for Cloud Atlas… then he spent a couple of weeks back home in Sydney before appearing on the Glasgow set of Cloud Atlas yesterday. The first set of pictures featuring Hugo with costar Halle Berry and director Tom Tykwer appeared all over the internet yesterday; you can see the largest versions at Just Jared (they’re subcredited to Pacific Coast News.) Hugo appears in only one of these, which I’ll add below… you can read details and speculation about the project at Latino Review, Scottish Daily Record, Flix 66 and Variety. By most accounts the Glasgow locations are being used for the 1970s-set Luisa Rey sequence.
Halle Berry on the Glasgow set Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
Hugo Weaving has six roles in the ambitious film, but none have yet been revealed, and I should note that none of the casting details have officially been announced, though Ben Whishaw has confirmed he’s playing Frobisher, Korean actress Bae Doo-na is almost certain to portray Sonmi-450 and Halle Berry will probably play Luisa Rey and Meronym. Whishaw also noted in a recent interview for The Vulture that all of the actors will be playing multiple roles, some crossing gender and racial boundaries. For those unfamiliar with the David Mitchell’s novel and its byzantine storyline structure/interwoven character arcs, you might want to check its Wikipedia entry before delving into the casting guessing game… or read the novel– you have plenty of time. 😉 /Film and Filmonic have posted detailed synopses of the novel with role speculation, some of which has already been confirmed and disproved. (Natalie Portman and Ian McKellen are no longer connected to the project; Jim Broadbent will likely inherit roles McKellen was initially approached to play.)
Cloud Atlas author David Mitchell expressed his enthusiastic approval for the film this spring in The Guardian. Co-director Tom Tyker briefly discussed the film with The New York Times, calling it “big-scale adult movie” of the kind Hollywood rarely gambles on these days. Jim Sturgess and Hugh Grant recently joined the impressive ensemble cast, which had already included Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugo Weaving, Susan Sarandon, Jim Broadbent, Ben Whishaw, Bae Doo-na, and Keith David.
Of course, the Wachowskis (who worked with Hugo on The Matrix trilogy and V for Vendetta) will be codirecting with Tykwer, by most accounts handling the more science fiction-oriented sequences in the film. They’re currently preparing locations in Mallorca (off the coast of Spain) for two segements, one of which will be set in the distance future and feature Halle Berry. According to Taylor Wimpey, ” There will be four film locations on the island including Port de Soller, Sa Calobra and Formentor for the 1850 era and Puig Major for the 2300 post-apocalyptic world where the only survivors live in a kind of Stone Age but with technological equipment, offering various special effects.” There will only be a few days of filming in Glasgow before the Mallorca sequences start shooting; Halle Berry was seen prepping for her role in Mallorca before heading to Scotland, so she’ll be heading back. Hugo Weaving and other actors haven’t been confirmed for the Mallorca shoot, but with Hugo playing six characters, I’m betting he’s in every segment, so he’ll be on hand too. The bulk of the project, including most interiors, will be filmed in Berlin’s famed Babelsberg Studios through December. No official release date for the film has been announced, but late 2012 is likely.
But enough talk… you want more pics of Hugo on the set. 😉 These are from Getty Images:
L to R: Halle Berry, Tom Tykwer (pointing), Hugo Weaving. Keith David can be seen behind Hugo in the next pic down.
All photos: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
Caption: “Halle Berry, director Tom Twyker and Hugo Weaving on set of Hollywood film Cloud Atlas being filmed in Glasgow on September 15, 2011 in Glasgow, Scotland. The city council has closed off a series of streets as Glasgow prepares to double for San Francisco for a scene which will include Halle Berry and Hugo Weaving. September 14, 2011- Photos by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images”
Finally, Hugo’s film Oranges and Sunshine, also starring Emily Watson and David Wenham, finally has an American release date, October 21. Most sites note a “limited” or “select theaters” release, which usually means arthouses– I’ll add more specifics as I find them. (The film will screen across Canada this fall too; dates, times and location posted at the Toronto Internation Film Festival site here and here.) Emily Watson briefly commented on the North American release of the film at IndieWire.
And here’s the new North American trailer: