Zac Efron is showing some skin – a lot of it, in fact – in his new film “The Paperboy,” which just debuted at the Cannes Film Festival.
“He was in his underwear half the time,” said singer Macy Gray, who plays a maid and narrates the movie, which also stars Nicole Kidman as what one Cannes reviewer described as “an oversexed Barbie.”
The movie, directed by Lee Daniels (“Precious”), is set in Florida in 1969 amid racial strife. Efron is 20-year-old Jack, the younger brother of a journalist (played by Matthew McConaughey) who has come back to his family’s small town to investigate whether a man was wrongly condemned to death row. Kidman’s character is fixated on the inmate.
In one early scene, Kidman tears off her pantyhose and has an orgasm while visiting the prisoner (played by John Cusack) on death row. Later, her character urinates on Efron on a beach after he is stung by jellyfish.
So, did she have reservations about her character’s overt sexuality?
“Strangely, no,” Kidman told reporters at the film festival. “I think I had to step into a place to play the character where I didn’t step out of it and look at myself, so it wasn’t hard to shoot.”
“I’d been looking as an actor for something raw and something dangerous,” she added.
Efron, 24, agreed that the movie stretched him as an actor.
“As much as I love everything I’ve done, this is a new frontier for me,” he said at the press conference. “It’s incredibly fulfilling. It’s a dream. Hopefully, I can keep doing things like this.”
As Gray mentioned, his character spends a good part of the film in white underwear – with his muscles prominently on display.
“I don’t think I was supposed to feel comfortable,” he explained of the revealing shoot. “It’s like life. This character is supposed to be learning the ways of the world, and that can be very uncomfortable. But it’s also exciting.” [Source]
Warner Bros is in talks with Jason Bateman, Zac Efron, Goldie Hawn, and Leslie Mann to headline the ensemble of “This Is Where I Leave You,” the Adam Shankman-directed adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper comic novel about four siblings who come home to sit ‘shiva’ for their deceased father. They are trapped in the house for seven days, and all the skeletons are bared.
Tropper, who memorably adapted Harvey into a script that once had Steven Spielberg committed to direct, adapted his own novel. It is a script that is drawing interest from a lot of talent, with other stars expected to step up for other roles in the ensemble. Spring Creek’s Paula Weinstein and Jeff Levine are producing with Shankman’s Offspring Entertainment partner Jennifer Gibgot. Hawn, who last starred in 2002′s The Banger Sisters, is in talks to play the clan’s mother. Bateman, Efron (whom Shankman directed in “Hairspray”) and Mann will play siblings. The intention is to begin production in early September. Shankman just directed the musical “Rock of Ages,” with Tom Cruise starring. [Source]
Zac Efron felt uncomfortable filming his revealing role “The Paperboy” and he says that’s the way he wanted it. The “High School Musical” actor has moved into decidedly grown-up territory with the film by “Precious” director Lee Daniels, which screened Thursday at the Cannes Film Festival.
It’s a swampy slice of southern gothic set in the 1960s, with Efron as an aspiring writer helping his journalist brother (Matthew McConaughey) investigate a possible miscarriage of justice. Efron’s Jack falls for Nicole Kidman’s sparky but sultry femme fatale, who is in turn obsessed with a death row inmate (a supremely creepy John Cusack). The cast also includes singer Macy Gray as Jack’s family maid and surrogate mother, and British actor David Oyelowo as an ambitious big-city journalist.
Efron spends much of the film in his underpants, but says he didn’t mind the scrutiny.
“I don’t think I was supposed to feel comfortable,” the 24-year-old actor told reporters in Cannes. “It’s like life. This character is supposed to be learning the ways of the world, and that can be very uncomfortable. But it’s also exciting.”
Daniels had a shallower explanation for all the Efron flesh on display.
“He’s a good-looking guy,” the director said. “And I’m gay. What do you want?”
Efron is not the only actor asked to bare his soul in the movie, which combines a crime thriller plot with a swampy landscape and undercurrents ofacism and sexuality into a pungent gumbo. Cusack sheds a lifetime of good guy roles to play the sweaty, sinister inmate, and loved every minute of it.
“The Paperboy” is adapted from a novel by Pete Dexter, with an expanded role for Gray’s character, Anita, who becomes the film’s narrator. Yardley, the reporter played by Oyelowo, is white in the book but black in the film.
“What I could give in this world was my truth, my understanding,” said Daniels. “Every single character in this movie is someone I know personally, someone I have interacted with personally. I saw a movie called ‘The Help,’ and though I liked it, most of my family was ‘help.’ They came back and told me stories about working with white people. There was a truth in Anita that I wanted to bring out, and that’s why I expanded that role. And also because there aren’t enough roles for African Americans in the world today.”
Daniels’ last film, “Precious,” was a surprise hit that won two Academy Awards in 2010. His next will be “The Butler,” the story of a long-serving White House staffer in which McConaughey plays John F. Kennedy and Cusack is Richard Nixon
“The Paperboy” has drawn mixed response in Cannes, where it is one of 22 films up for the Palme d’Or, to be awarded Sunday.
But the actors seem to have adored the experience. Efron said working with Kidman had been a dream.
“I’ve been in love with her for a long time—since ‘Moulin Rouge,'” Efron said. “It was the loveliest time in the world for me.” [Source]
After “The Paperboy” grossed out audiences at the Cannes Film Festival with a urination scene involving Zac Efron and Nicole Kidman, the latter has revealed that no stunt pee was used. That’s right – an upcoming movie actually features former Disney idol and Hollywood hunk Zac Efron getting urinated on by Nicole Kidman.
The film itself is based on an illicet love affair between the titular paperboy and trailer trash character Charlotte, played by Nicole. A scene in the film features Efron’s character being stung by a jellyfish and as friends fans will tell you, you’re probably going to get peed on if you want to relieve that situation.
“Yes, I did the scene. That was what Lee wanted. It was in the script. And it’s pretty out there,” Nicole told Deadline Hollywood. “I mean, I love Zac. He’s such a great guy and let me just say I am glad it was him. I feel safe with Zac and hopefully he feels safe with me. Oh my God I can’t believe it’s all over Twitter. Of course it would be all over Twitter!”
Despite getting urinated on by the blonde bombshell, Efron was effusive in his praise for the co-star, telling Radar Online: “It was everything you dreamed of.”
“She was such a lovely person. I pinched myself every day, especially after doing love scenes with Nicole Kidman. It was the highlight of my life.”
But… didn’t she pee on you Zac? Even though director Lee Daniels later wanted to omit the scene, his lead actress fought for it to included.
“She said, ‘Lee, you made me pee on Zac Efron, if you don’t put that in the movie, you’re out of your freakin’ mind’,” Lee told GQ Magazine. [Source]
Zac Efron was spotted in Cannes on May 23rd and 24th, 2012. Enjoy the pics below!
Zac Efron appeared at “Le Grand Journal” on May 23rd, 2012. Enjoy watching the video below and viewing pictures!
• [5/23] Le Grand Journal (x31)
Zac Efron was spotted arriving at the airport in Nice, France, on May 23rd, 2012. Enjoy the pics!
• [5/23] At Nice Airport In Nice (x11)
Hey guys! I am really sorry for no updates for the past two or three weeks. I was busy working on some project and my personal life, so I could not update this website. But that’s going to change, so expect tons of updates coming soon!
Zac Efron was spotted at LAX Airport in Los Angeles on May 22nd, 2012. Zac Efron headed for Cannes, France.
• [5/22] At LAX Airport In Los Angeles (x109)
Nicholas Stoller, who most recently directed “The Five-Year Engagement” for Universal, is in negotiations to helm the studio’s planned Seth Rogen-Zac Efron comedy “Townies.” Universal picked up the project in a bidding war in July, plunking down seven figures on the pitch from writers Andrew Cohen and Brendan O’Brien.
The story sees Rogen as a regular family man who lives near an alpha-male fraternity house and has to contend with a frat member (Efron) whose raucous behavior wreaks havoc on his life.
Rogen and his Point Grey Pictures partner Evan Goldberg are producing. James Weaver, Cohen and O’Brien are exec producing.
Stoller, considered part of the Judd Apatow crew, seems to have made Universal his home in recent years. He also directed “Get Him to the Greek” and “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” for the studio. He first worked with Rogen when the latter co-starred on the short-lived Fox series Undeclared and Stoller wrote a trio of episodes. [Source]