Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Gilliam to play Game of Death with Ledger's final film.

Last week, we had reported that Terry Gilliam ended production on his newest film, The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus after lead actor Heath Ledger passed away. According to People, it looks like the show will go on.

Here's an excerpt:

Despite earlier reports that the director might shelve the $30 million production, Gilliam, whom [Co-Star Christopher] Plummer describes as "terribly saddened" by Ledger’s death is "trying to work out at this moment how to continue on. Fortunately, because the film deals with magic, there is a way, perhaps, of turning Heath into other people and then, using stills and I think they call it CGI…

"Terry was a very good friend [of Heath's]," adds Plummer. "He very wants to go on with the movie, and I can very much understand why. Because he wants to dedicate it to Heath, of course."


The write-up goes on to mention how rigorous the shooting schedule was on that film. You can read about it here.

The question remains, however, is should Gilliam finish his Imaginarium, will it be as lame as the 'final' Bruce Lee film, Game of Death? While Game inspired wardrobe choices of characters in both Kill Bill and Shaolin Soccer, it was a horrible movie. They had shot around 40 minutes worth of action scenes for Game of Death when Bruce Lee suddenly left during the middle of production to make Enter the Dragon, his U.S. debut. Lee had promised to shoot the rest of the movie but passed away due before he could. No strangers to exploitation, Golden Harvest plowed ahead and finished it without Lee, using every cheap trick in the process. You had a body double who wore large sunglasses and a Gilligan hat, spliced in clips from previous Bruce Lee films, and then cardboard cut-outs of Bruce Lee's face. No joke. The result was a tacky ending for the career of a screen icon.

I hope Gilliam knows what he's doing. No one will want him to repeat the same mistake.

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