Friday, July 11, 2008

'Crash' moves from big screen to little, and Dennis Hopper makes a little friend

"Crash" the TV show features none of the actors or characters from "Crash" the Oscar-winning movie. TV "Crash" and movie "Crash" share some behind-the-scenes personnel, but most of them (like writer/director Paul Haggis and writer Bobby Moresco) have little day-to-day involvement. The show, though it's set in Los Angeles like the movie, is actually filmed in New Mexico.

So why call it "Crash"?

"Our hope is that people tune in to the first episode and at the end go, 'Well, that was nothing like the movie, but it felt exactly like the movie," TV "Crash" showrunner Glen Mazzara (from "The Shield") told me after the show's press tour session, where most of the questions dealt with the connections, or lack thereof, between show and movie.

(That is, when we weren't busy channeling our inner 12-year-olds and being fascinated by Dennis Hopper -- the biggest name in the show's cast, in the role of a Phil Spector-esque music producer -- revealing that his character is introduced while having a conversation with his penis.)

"You can't make the movie again," insisted Moresco, who showed up at press tour along with Cheadle to represent the film legacy (Haggis did not). "You have to make a television show."

"I think if people are expecting to see the movie done over 13 episodes, that's not what they're going to see," said Cheadle, who said he had yet to do any daily producing work on the series due to his movie acting, and that he and Mazzara have talked about the possibility of reprising his troubled cop role from the movie.

Moresco said the show has the right to bear the name because the setting will be the same (even though they're filming in New Mexico to save money), and because "it's about those people who come to the city of Los Angeles and trying to figure out what they're all going through."

We haven't seen the show yet, just a couple of clips, and as a "Shield" fan, I can see how Mazzara would be a good choice to tackle thematically-similar material. But we'll see if the "Crash" name alone is enough to get people to tune into the first original drama series Starz! has ever done.

13 comments:

Anna said...

Ew. It lost me at "Crash." And then it lost me even more at "Dennis Hopper."

TL said...

Starz? People pay for that channel?

Pamela Jaye said...

i was considering it, till you said Starz

don't have it

finally saw the movie around the time Enchanted was released. Saw them both the same weekend. It was kind of ....odd.

too bad it's not based on the movie, though. American Family on PBS was kind of based on Mi Familia - I just kept missing the episodes due to the time slot and such

I would have liked to have seen it all. loved the movie

jim treacher said...

Well, Crash the Movie felt like a condescending, manipulative piece of garbage. Then again, Crash the TV Series has none of the people who were responsible for that. And it's got a guy from The Shield. So maybe they'll aim higher.

Eric said...

As long as it has nothing to do with the Paul Haggis movie, they might as well also claim it has nothing to do with the David Cronenberg movie.

Bobman said...

Well, Crash the Movie felt like a condescending, manipulative piece of garbage.

It is so relieving to hear I'm not the only person that thought that. Everyone looks at me with ten heads when I tell them I didn't like it.

Such a melodramatic and dishonest film.

Also.... Starz! seems like a ridiculous place to try and throw a dramatic series. I had it for a while with one of the many digital cable tiers, and it wasn't a bad station if you like watching the occasional movie on cable, but I certainly wouldn't put it on par with Showtime and HBO.

Dark Tyler said...

Not this execrable pile of crash again. Can't we just collectively pretend that this movie never happened? WHEN WILL IT ALL GO AWAY etc.

melongum said...

ugh... Now a movie based on Croenberg and J.G. Ballard's Crash now that i could get excited for!

anon said...

This is weird. At the end of this blog post I know less about _Crash_, the TV show, then when I started reading it.

Anon

Karen said...

Count me in as someone who hated the film as well. Manipulative--that's the word for it. And so in love with its gimmick and its moral that it didn't care if it had a morsel of reality.

Hated it.

Anonymous said...

Nice to see that the racist wingnuts are out in force.

Now that we know your opinion of African-Americans, what's your opinions of Latinos, Asian-Americans, Native Americans, women, gays and lesbians--as if we didn't already know?

Nicole said...

I was so bored by Crash that I really can't see how they will make a series about this. Is every week a new way to find out how people in LA are racist?

I have not been impressed with Haggis movies, but he has written decent television in the past (EZ Streets), although since he will have little involvement, I don't see this going very far.

jim treacher said...

Nice to see that the racist wingnuts are out in force.

Now that we know your opinion of African-Americans, what's your opinions of Latinos, Asian-Americans, Native Americans, women, gays and lesbians--as if we didn't already know?


Right, because:

Not liking a stupid, inept movie about racism = Racism