The first sincere idea I ever had for a movie was about a young gangster in 1980s Nashville. In 2002, I wrote 12 pages — the film’s opening scene — in which the main character, whose name was Elvis Reichert, walked into a country radio station, burst through a studio door and assaulted the DJ while he was on the air. I’ll spare you the reasons why that happened. (They weren’t all that interesting, but that’s a pretty damn good idea for a first scene. Any audience would commit after seeing that.) Regardless, when I told college friend, one-time Cribbster contributor and Disco Vietnam frontman Barry Schwartz the idea he wondered who could play Elvis.
“Stephen Dorff,” I said.
“Yessssssss,” Schwartz said.
Here’s the thing about Stephen Dorff. Beyond the “Blade” movies and that Britney Spears music video I can’t remember a frame of his work. But I’ll remember his name and face until the day I die. I can’t quite pinpoint why, but for some reason I wanna watch that dude do stuff, and that’s pretty much the primary requisite for a movie star. It’s very simple. You like watching them do shit. These kind of gifts are innate. You can become a great actor. You can’t become a great movie star. You are or you aren’t.
Stephen Dorff is a movie star.
Even if he isn’t.
That said, when I read Sofia Coppola would release her fourth movie this year I was pretty stoked. Every one of her flicks cut to the marrow. There’s no fat, and she makes movies on her terms. Even when it seems she’s sort of wandering in her movies, every decision she makes whether its tonal, musical or even sartorial, it always feels like the right decision. One of the best American filmmakers alive. When I read she chose Dorff to star, it became the biggest movie of year for me. Focus Features dropped the trailer yesterday. Peep it because it rocks.
UPDATE: Also found the movie poster, which is pure awesome.