BREAKING: Alejandro González Iñárritu, the Mexican director whose films are about as serious and sad as anything I’ve seen from a world-class filmmaker, is about to lighten the tone and make us laugh with his next feature. Gonzalez Inarritu will next direct Birdman, a comedy he co-wrote with Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, and Armando Bo.
Gonzalez Inarritu followed the tragedy-filled Amores Perros, 21 Grams and Babel by making possibly the most heartbreaking film I’ve ever seen in Biutiful, his last film. Here, he’ll tell the story of an actor in crisis, who once played an iconic superhero, as he battles his ego and attempts to recover his family, his career, and himself in the days leading up to the opening of a Broadway play. Birdman will be captured in a single location over the span of three days. Production is currently slated to begin in March 2013. Iñárritu will produce with Robert Graf and his former agent-turned-producer John Lesher. CAA reps Iñárritu and will rep the film.
Gonzalez Inarritu continues to develop a screen screen adaptation of the Michael Punke novel The Revenant at New Regency. Last I checked, the filmmaker was talking with Leonardo DiCaprio about playing 1820s frontiersman Hugh Glass, who hires on to a fur-trapping expedition and is so badly mauled by a bear that he’s unable to be transported back from the wilderness. He hires two men to stay behind. Expecting him to die, they rob and abandon him instead, leaving him helpless. When he recovers, he is hellbent on revenge. The director was also talking with Sean Penn to play one of the men who left him for dead. 20th Century Fox will distribute.