The saga continues for David O. Russell‘s “Nailed,” his aborted, troubled farce that he walked away from last year, but is still in the hands of financiers who are trying to get some kind of finished product released. Shooting on the film — written by O. Russell and Kristin Gore, daughter of Al — began in 2008 but was plagued by multiples delays and financial struggles on account of David Bergstein‘s shady dealings. Despite all that, production was noted to be only days away from completion with formerly silent partner Ron Tutor coming out from the shadows last year in an attempt to make something of the “$26 million just sitting on a shelf.” And while O. Russell has officially walked from the film, about a month ago, a screening of an extremely rough cut of the film played for an early test audience (you read reader feedback here) and at the time, it was noted the film was presented with an oldies soundtrack that we surmised was a temp track. Looks like we were right.
Film Music Reporter have revealed that John Swihart (“Youth In Revolt,” “New In Town“) has been hired to score the film. As you might recall, way back in 2009, it was reported that Squeak E. Clean (aka Sam Spiegel, Spike Jonze‘s younger brother and one half of the quasi hip-hop duo N.A.S.A.) had been tasked with the soundtrack duties — a fairly bold choice. But it’s probably a safe guess that with Russell bouncing, Spiegel’s music likely went with it (and/or with the film in such production disarray as it was, Clean may have been hired, but the music may not have even been composed since there wasn’t much of a post-production).
But with Swihart’s hire, it looks like moves are being made to finish the film — though it’s apparently in rough shape with at least one key scene that still needs to be reshot. That “missing scene,” or unfinished one, in the picture—when Jessica Biel first gets a nail accidentally drilled into her head—was not exactly missing, per se, in the rough cut that was screened, but it was incomplete at least. The scene was there with a title on the bottom that read: “to be reshot.” It was, we’re told, a confusing moment and poorly lit, so this is likely why they’d want to reshoot it. Apparently it made the film feel very jarring since it’s basically the first plot point that puts the story into motion. That said, contractually, everyone is obliged to finish the movie though it will be interesting to see if moves are made to corral cast members — which include Jake Gyllenhaal, James Marsden, Catherine Keener, Paul Reubens, James Brolin, Kirstie Alley and Tracy Morgan — to get any further scenes finished (and if so, who they will get to direct) or if they will just try and edit around the moment somehow. All this on top of a suggestion made by Paul Reubens (who also has a small role in the film) last month at SXSW that O. Russell’s camp was trying to “bury the film” now that he’s an Oscar-nominated director.
Still lots to be answered about “Nailed,” the political satire about a naïve and uninsured small town waitress (Biel) who suffers an accidental nail to the head at the hands of incompetent construction workers, heads to Washington and becomes a cause celebre for healthcare rights. But as the wheels on this one keep turning, it sounds more and more like a parody of bad Hollywood production itself.