NYFF Adds Secret “Work-In-Progress” Screening For A Major Film; What Will It Be?

NYFF Adds Secret "Work-In-Progress" Screening For A Major Film; What Will It Be?

Update: NYFF says this film will be from a “master filmmaker” not a “legendary filmmaker,” and the picture is one that will be released sometime in 2011 so that changes up at lot of your guesses. Let the speculation continue…

Just when you think you have a handle on the awards season, another curveball is thrown. The New York Film Festival is at the front end of the two-week-long event and if you think you’ve got all your tickets for the major screenings and events, guess again. Organizers have announced that on Monday, October 10th at 7 PM at Avery Fisher Hall they will be unveiling a screening of a film that’s still a “work-in-progress” by a “legendary” filmmaker. So what on Earth can it be?

With the year winding down most of the Oscar hopefuls have been seen with only a few left to play for critics. There’s Clint Eastwood‘s “J. Edgar” but that will be premiering at AFI in November and it’s unlikely it will play first at NYFF. There’s Jason Reitman‘s “Young Adult,” though the director can hardly be called legendary and moreover, the film is locked and has already been screened to select critics. A strong possibility would be Stephen Daldry‘s “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,” as it only began shooting in February of this year and he’s likely still tinkering with it in post-production in advance of its December release date. Not to mention that the 9/11 drama is a quintessential New York City movie. Another candidate and the one this writer is putting his money on? David Fincher‘s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”

If you remember, the filmmaker premiered “The Social Network” at the New York Film Festival last year so that relationship is already there. And even though Fincher was still shooting additional footage in August, if he was able to cut together an eight minute preview, putting together a rough edit isn’t out of the question. Moreover, Sony would likely want an early screening to start getting some significant buzz brewing about the dark and difficult film. With no festival presence for the movie, getting the mainstream audience the film needs to be a success will be a marketing challenge, but in one fell swoop with a NYFF screening, they can really get the word on the movie out there in a major way.

But hell, that’s just a guess and it could something else completely. Steven Spielberg‘s “War Horse” maybe? Or perhaps Martin Scorsese‘s “Hugo” (after all he’s already been at the fest this year for his George Harrison documentary). We’ll find out soon enough. [Deadline]

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The Playlist

It’s “Hugo.”


Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is my bet. The film has also been doing test screenings in New York recently. And Daldry can be considered a “master” filmmaker.

Bob Violence

“Hugo” has been test-screening over the past few weeks in a slightly unfinished version, so I’m leaning towards that one.

Andrew M

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Hugo, and War Horse are the best bets based on the info. War Horse has the master filmmaker, but it is finished , so I think it’s out (though they may just be calling it a work in progress).
TGWDT is still filming, so it is a work in progress, but I don’t know if Fincher would show it.
That leaves Hugo, obviously a master filmmaker, and a lot of effects work that would show the work in progress.

Bob Violence

“The legend goes that WKW delivered ‘2046’ to Cannes so late that the reels were still wet. Did he edit it after before it hit theaters? Perhaps. But it certainly wasn’t a work in progress.”

The Cannes version was a WIP — it had unfinished CGI in black and white and the sound mix was apparently quite rough (“In the Mood for Love” also premiered with an unfinished mix). “2046” (and “My Blueberry Nights”) were re-edited after Cannes, but I think “In the Mood for Love” went out in more or less the same form, bar the soundtrack.

As for “The Grandmasters” being the mystery film, I imagine an NYFF screening (even of an unfinished version) would blow its shot at the big European festivals, and I can’t really see them trading a big international debut like that for a surprise premiere in New York. Plus I’m not entirely convinced it’ll be in theaters this year, although the Chinese media still reports a vague “December” release date.

Kevin Jagernauth

I wonder if Spike Lee’s “Red Hook Summer” is a possibility.


@Chadd: I don’t think it’s Dragon Tattoo either, but every Fincher movie has heavy effects work, regardless of genre.

Kevin Jagernauth

I’m actually surprised no one mentioned Wes Anderson. Not gonna happen, but still.


how can we get tickets?? Does anyone know if there is a standby line?

Kevin Jagernauth

Also, there is no fucking way “Prometheus” is showing. Get a grip people.

Kevin Jagernauth

1. The legend goes that WKW delivered “2046” to Cannes so late that the reels were still wet. Did he edit it after before it hit theaters? Perhaps. But it certainly wasn’t a work in progress.

2. Add PTA to the “dream on” list.

Kevin Jagernauth

Not “Tintin.” That movie opens overseas in a couple of weeks, so it’s not a work-in-progress. “Hugo” perhaps.


Last night Scott Foundas told the audience about the screening mentioning they also did it for Beauty and the Beast back whenever (showing it with pencil sketches, etc.) This leads me to believe it’s a film with heavy effects work, probably Hugo or Tintin.

It is NOT Dragon Tattoo.

Brad Milne

I say Prometheus, mostly since I think Fincher will be too busy to screen the movie before it is ready, in just a few short months. Where as Prometheus, may have a rough cut ready. Would be happy if Fincher did screen what he has though. Plus I think it is safe to describe Ridley Scott as a Master filmmaker, if not a legendary one.


Actually, after reading the update, I’m changing my guess to either “Hugo” or “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo”.


I’m going to make a very bold guess and say it’s PTA’s
“The Master” mostly because of the “master filmmaker” quote. Though I think it’s too early for that.


I’m not gonna take semantics into the issue.

Until I’m proven otherwise I’m gonna place my bet on HUGO.

concerned citizen kane

Paul Thomas Anderson and “The Master” — or has that not in post yet?


Keith, didn’t Wong kar-Wai show 2046 at Cannes before he had delivered his final cut? Or did he re-edit after a poor reaction at said screening?


The Wettest County in the World (John Hillcoat)


Doubtful it is OTR since it isn’t slated for this year.


I’d bet the farm on Dragon Tattoo.


whoops… guess it pays to read the article instead of just going thru the comments. good call, kevin.


fincher’s social network premiered at nyff last year.


It’s not Eastwood. J. Edgar has been rated by the MPAA, meaning it’s not a work-in-progress.

Thanks, Cory. With that in mind, it could definitely be Fincher. Fincher or Scorsese.

Kevin Jagernauth

The Salles and Yimou guesses are pretty good.

Cory Everett

It should be pointed out that Filmlinc didn’t say “legendary filmmaker,” Deadline did for some reason. Filmlinc only says “master filmmaker” which changes the odds on some of these as legendary implies a large body of work and master could be someone who’s been around less time.

That said, I still think it’ll be J. Edgar since they’re all up on Eastwood: they premiered Hereafter and The Changeling even though those ended up being non-starters awards/critics/audience/everything-wise.


What about Walter Salles and OTR.


Maybe Zhang Yimou’s Bale-starrer film? They want to premiere it here in the US to qualify for the major categories.


what about the new Francis Ford Coppola movie?


Malick and Wong-kar Wai are wishful thinking. Scorsese and Spielberg seems likeliest

Nuclear Waste Aerobics

The man, the myth, and yes, the legend:


Kevin Jagernauth

Malick or Wong Kar-Wai are not going to show off anything they haven’t finished. Keep dreaming guys.


Malick and Wong-kar Wai are good suggestions, too.


Probably not the Eastwood, since that movie’s probably finished by now. No way would NYFF call Stephen Daldry or Jason Reitman legendary. And as much as that crowd likes Fincher, I doubt they’d call him legendary either. Scorsese is the most likely I think.


How is “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” a “strong” possibility? Daldry isn’t anywhere near legendary.

How about a couple of out-there candidates like Malick (who’s reportedly completed shooting his next film, and whose films are perpetually “in progress”) or Wong-kar Wai (ditto)?

Or even Coppola, whose “Twixt” is indeed a work in progress. Unless the implication is that the film has never been screened.

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