ARTICLE: “If anyone can make Pattinson into Packer, it will be Cronenberg.”

Excerpt from death + taxes magazine:

Don DeLillo’s “Cosmopolis” is a vintage, icy satire.  It might share the NYC setting and financial playground staked out by Oliver Stone in “Wall Street,” but whereas Charlie Sheen stands at his balcony and asks, “Who am I,” Eric Packer looks at his skyscraper penthouse from the street below and remembers, “I want a haircut.”

And so begins Packer’s Ulyssian odyssey through Manhattan as a 28 year old billionaire hedge fund manager, who’s made his money in tech stocks, and has an almost abstract-nihilistic approach to life and business.

Everything in existence, whether biological or digital (like illuminated stock numbers), is merely a projection of a life without meaning for Packer.  But it becomes apparent, as the novel progresses, that Packer is not simply some simple projection of post-modern nihilism.

With that in mind, is it possible for Robert Pattinson to pull of a character that can so easily descend into caricature?

My guess is that he could possibly pull off Packer’s icy, intellectual arrogance, as well as the threads of emotion running underneath the character’s veneer.  Perhaps Pattinson was who Cronenberg needed to greenlight “Cosmopolis,” although I have a hard time believing Cronenberg would crumble to studio pressure on casting.

Whatever the case, the field of actors at the appropriate age is limited.  Who wants to see James Franco in another project, and Ryan Gosling is too obvious a choice for this role.  The fact that Juliette Binoche and Mathieu Amalric have been cast will surely help raise Pattinson’s game.

If anyone can make Pattinson into Packer, it will be Cronenberg.


Overall good read exploring Cosmopolis. Click HERE to read the article in its entirety.

  • Marina H.

    Did he say nihilistic?


    Good article. The best thing about the pre-production and the casting of Rob is that people are really sitting down and thinking, “Can he do this?” We know the answer…but if everyone is thinking about it…think how wow’ed they’ll be when he actually DOES it!

    Exciting things coming…

    • nihilistic will never be the same, huh 😉 i thought the same thing…

    • *giggle*

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  • carolyn

    Thanks so much for all the up dates…lol, i left that comment on “ARTICLE: “If anyone can make Pattinson into Packer, it will be Cronenberg.” death + taxes magazine site…I take Robert seriously…And look so forward to this film…

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  • rpattzgirl

    I completely disagree….If anyone can make Pattinson into Packer-it’s Robert fucking Pattinson.

    • Marina H.

      Touche!! 🙂

    • Loisada

      Love the way you cut to the chase RPG and stand up for the man!

      I do agree with what the author is implying: Cronenberg is a good actors’ director, and filmmaking is a collaborative process. A great director helps his cast sharpen their craft and draws an even stronger performance out of them. He gives them extra takes to experiment with different approaches to scenes, which means he has to trust and respect them and let them do their thing instead of insisting they do everything his way. I’m betting that when A Dangerous Mind comes out, we’re going to see the best work that Keira Knightley has ever done, and no one with any brains will called her just a “jawline and a pout” again. Cronenberg has more or less singlehandedly changed the reputations of Keira and Viggo (both initially known as beauties but underrated as actors).

      The fact is: Rob has not worked with a really great director before, with Coulter arguably the best so far. And even though RM got highjacked by the circus of the NYC shoot, Rob still gave a fine performance. He has been wading through this pretty much on his own up until now. For the first time, he’s going to be working with an extremely intelligent, quirky, transgressive director who likes to tackle thought-provoking and often violent material. His films are a mindfuck, but they are also very physical and often require the actors to take their bodies to very uncomfortable places. He also said that at one point he would have liked to work with an intelligent actor like Robert Downey Jr. But now… no. Why not? Because franchise acting can stunt an actor:

      “He’s got three or four franchises going for himself. And I’m not sure that’s been good for him as an actor. … But you can become glib and you can fall back on some tics, and I’m starting to see a few of those in what he’s doing. Is that because he’s encouraged to do that by his directors, or not? I don’t know.”

      Like Cronenberg has said, he isn’t interested in making just good mainstream entertainment. He wants to go beyond “to-level filming” to make “top-level art.”
      To do that, he is going to push all of Rob’s buttons, and you know that an equally smart and original thinker like Rob is going to push back. I can’t wait to see what they come up with together.

      And here’s one last thing to make you love Cronenberg even more: he was asked to direct Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but turned it down. “No, it really should be called Men Who Hate Women,” which was the title of the book in Swedish. Because that’s what it’s about. It wasn’t an approach that appealed to me. Every man in that movie except the lead guy is a rapist and a misogynist, if not a murderer of women. And there’s something that’s not really being dealt with. I don’t know if the novels opened that out but there was something that really didn’t appeal to me.”

      • MPV

        There is a difference between Kiera and Viggo casting in DC´s other projects to Rob´s casting… Viggo was just coming out of and Oscar award winning franchise where he played everyone’s favorite character: Aragorn and he was good at it. Kiera had terrible reviews in the POTC trilogy for her acting (the only thing that got good review in that trilogy was JD) but before releasing POTC2 and POTC3, she did Pride and Prejudice and I remember she said her self the reason her performance was good was because the director used to yell at her every time he saw her falling in her usual pouting, but yet she obtained in an Oscar nomination in the mid of terrible reviews for POTC.. so with their casting in DC´s projects, no reporter bats an eye at it, they see why David is casting them, in their eyes both Kiera and Viggo have proven they can act… now Rob is just sparkly vampire and though he did a great job in RM, that job is very subtle, sort of what DC used to say about Viggo´s job in History of Violence saying he thought Viggo deserved more recognition about it, because it was very subtle and what he expected of the actor playing it. So people don´t see why Rob should be cast for one of his project because there is not much reference to Rob´s job and the only reference there is for most, is the Twilight saga which is so bad that actually even made an actor like Michael Sheen act average to his potential. Reporters expect DC to cast Robert Downey JR to his projects because they see him as already proved in his talent, while DC sees an actor that though already proven good now is so confident in his skill that is falling on tics.

        I can´t wait to see what Rob will do with DC, but I´m also eager to see what he did in BA working with a theatre director like Donald Declan.

        • As a certain beloved boyfriend of mine long long ago told me. Even in bad movies there are always certain wonderful scenes that are worth it. A friend of mine said that the first scene in Death in Venice was such a scene to him. So this brings me to Michael Sheen in Twilight. I loved him as Aro. He was perfect as the Red Queen in drag to Alice all Alice’s visions being a play on Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Off with their heads! And then changing his mind.

          Twilight is play and was never meant to be a serious series of films as no one really knew what they were doing with it. Except Weitz and he was limited by Scummit.

          Cosmopolis is major. And Cronenberg comments with all sorts of daggery edges, doesn’t he? No playing nice for him! This is what I think and perceive. I am not going to dip it in sugar or honey for you. He could have said the same thing about Downey and there would have been no sting to it. He is a rose with thorns as the Germans say.

          And I loved all that you said.

      • i agree…this will be the best director Rob works with. it will be a challenge and i think he welcomes that. we heard him on the MTV interview. he knew. u say “yes” when Cronenberg calls and this will only make him better at his craft. 🙂 i can only imagine how awesome this is for him considering what a cinephile he is.

        oh to be a fly on the window of that limo…

  • Well, it sounds like they’re trying to make it into some sort of convenience-casting to give the role of Eric to Rob…but at least they don’t dismiss him…one small step forward? 😉

    • Can you think of anyone who would be more perfect for Packer? I really can’t. And there are many similarities between him and Packer. Or as I once said, “Tyler making different choices.”

      • MPV

        This is interesting…
        care to explain the similarities between Rob and Eric??
        I´ve seen many people commenting there are, just not delving into it and I always wonder on that.