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"Hounddog:" Controversial Oscar Bait For Dakota Fannning?


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http://www.nydailynews.com/news/gossip/sto...3p-367837c.html

From NY Daily News

All shook up over Dakota's 'Hounddog'

Twelve-year-old Dakota Fanning deals with rape and child abuse in 'Hounddog.'

Cute-as-a-button child star Dakota Fanning, who turned 12 in February, is venturing into sexually disturbing territory in a movie being filmed in North Carolina.

The screenplay for "Hounddog" - a dark story of abuse, violence and Elvis Presley adulation in the rural South, written and directed by Deborah Kampmeier - calls for Fanning's character to be raped in one explicit scene and to appear naked or clad only in "underpants" in several other horrifying moments.

Fanning's mother, Joy, and her Hollywood agent, Cindy Osbrink, see the movie as a possible Oscar vehicle for the pint-size star. But despite Fanning's status as a bankable actress - whose movies, including last year's "War of the Worlds," have earned more than half a billion dollars since 2001 - the alarming material seems to have scared off potential investors from the under-$5 million indie project.

"The two taboos in Hollywood are child abuse and the killing of animals," a source close to the situation told me. "In this movie, both things happen."

Fanning's carefully choreographed rape scene has already been filmed. But then the production - which also stars Robin Wright Penn, David Morse and Piper Laurie - was shut down for lack of funds. Penn, who's also an executive producer, gave a pep talk to the dispirited cast in the days leading up to the shutdown. The desperate producer, Jen Gatien, daughter of former club czar Peter Gatien, sent out an SOS to New York entertainment entrepreneur Lawrence Robins. Robins located emergency investors, filming resumed, and the movie is scheduled to wrap tomorrow.

"The subject matter is very tough," Robins told me, "but I was attracted to it because in the end it's a story about human understanding, about a little girl who's dealt a very bad deck of cards, but finds solace in the music of Elvis and survives."

The script requires the preteen actress to confront tougher challenges than Brooke Shields and Jodie Foster did when, at Fanning's age, they played child prostitutes.

"It's not just the rape scene - the whole story is challenging Dakota as an actress," Fanning's longtime agent, Osbrink, told me. "And I've never been so proud of her in my life. I've seen the dailies, and in every scene she gets better and better."

Hmmm. The thought of this movie makes me VERY uncomfortable. And I usually am not a fan of films, but I try to see the most [NAME NOT ALLOWED]/controversial films(the ones I was proud to get off my duff and see were Passion of the Christ, Fahrenheit 911, and Brokeback Mountain). I have always felt that in order to judge a movie, you have to SEE the movie. So, if the movie comes to this area, I will probably watch it, because I don't like to judge any movie or any TV Show without having seen it before.

I'm hoping that this movie has a beautiful and powerful message behind all of the bad stuff that happens to Fanning's character in the movie.

Wonder how long it will take before the radio/TV pundits start talking about it, saying that this movie will feed fantasies of pedophilia to perverts, etc. I just wonder what the debate will be surrounding this film and if all the beginning buzz won't translate to Oscar Gold. Around this time last year, the same underground buzz surrounded Brokeback and it still didn't win any Oscars, aside from Best Director.

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http://www.nydailynews.com/news/gossip/sto...3p-367837c.html

From NY Daily News

All shook up over Dakota's 'Hounddog'

Twelve-year-old Dakota Fanning deals with rape and child abuse in 'Hounddog.'

Cute-as-a-button child star Dakota Fanning, who turned 12 in February, is venturing into sexually disturbing territory in a movie being filmed in North Carolina.

The screenplay for "Hounddog" - a dark story of abuse, violence and Elvis Presley adulation in the rural South, written and directed by Deborah Kampmeier - calls for Fanning's character to be raped in one explicit scene and to appear naked or clad only in "underpants" in several other horrifying moments.

Fanning's mother, Joy, and her Hollywood agent, Cindy Osbrink, see the movie as a possible Oscar vehicle for the pint-size star. But despite Fanning's status as a bankable actress - whose movies, including last year's "War of the Worlds," have earned more than half a billion dollars since 2001 - the alarming material seems to have scared off potential investors from the under-$5 million indie project.

"The two taboos in Hollywood are child abuse and the killing of animals," a source close to the situation told me. "In this movie, both things happen."

Fanning's carefully choreographed rape scene has already been filmed. But then the production - which also stars Robin Wright Penn, David Morse and Piper Laurie - was shut down for lack of funds. Penn, who's also an executive producer, gave a pep talk to the dispirited cast in the days leading up to the shutdown. The desperate producer, Jen Gatien, daughter of former club czar Peter Gatien, sent out an SOS to New York entertainment entrepreneur Lawrence Robins. Robins located emergency investors, filming resumed, and the movie is scheduled to wrap tomorrow.

"The subject matter is very tough," Robins told me, "but I was attracted to it because in the end it's a story about human understanding, about a little girl who's dealt a very bad deck of cards, but finds solace in the music of Elvis and survives."

The script requires the preteen actress to confront tougher challenges than Brooke Shields and Jodie Foster did when, at Fanning's age, they played child prostitutes.

"It's not just the rape scene - the whole story is challenging Dakota as an actress," Fanning's longtime agent, Osbrink, told me. "And I've never been so proud of her in my life. I've seen the dailies, and in every scene she gets better and better."

Hmmm. The thought of this movie makes me VERY uncomfortable. And I usually am not a fan of films, but I try to see the most [NAME NOT ALLOWED]/controversial films(the ones I was proud to get off my duff and see were Passion of the Christ, Fahrenheit 911, and Brokeback Mountain). I have always felt that in order to judge a movie, you have to SEE the movie. So, if the movie comes to this area, I will probably watch it, because I don't like to judge any movie or any TV Show without having seen it before.

I'm hoping that this movie has a beautiful and powerful message behind all of the bad stuff that happens to Fanning's character in the movie.

Wonder how long it will take before the radio/TV pundits start talking about it, saying that this movie will feed fantasies of pedophilia to perverts, etc. I just wonder what the debate will be surrounding this film and if all the beginning buzz won't translate to Oscar Gold. Around this time last year, the same underground buzz surrounded Brokeback and it still didn't win any Oscars, aside from Best Director.

I'm uncomfortable with the fact that 12-year-olds, these days, can get naked for a film and Hollywood sees nothing wrong with that. I'm sorry but I don't buy that ANY nude scene is critical in ANY situation. It's like Julia Roberts once said (and I'm paraphrasing): acting is acting, but nude scenes make for a documentary.

This is ridiculous.

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I kinda agree with you on nude scenes. Today they are overdone and I believe used to gain attention and in Dakota's case Oscar buzz, kinda like Halle Berry in Monster's Ball.

I saw a potentially good film with Anne Hathaway called Havoc. The good script was ruined all of these unnessasary nude scenes. Another character was gang raped with very little nudity, but they made a point of giving Hathaway nude scenes throughout the movie. It was her "I'm an adult and stepping away from Disney" role. I hate that stuff.

In the case of a serious movie about child abuse, I say less is more. Showing less is always more powerful in a story and forces the actors to go even deeper to convey the right emotions. I saw a film called Mysterious Skin about two little boys who were raped and the director shot it in a way that the kids wouldn't even know what the scenes were about. There was no nudity and lots was left to the imagination.

I recommend you guys see it, I'm sure it's better than this piece of crap. Plus I hate any movie that admits that they're courting an Oscar.

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B)-->

QUOTE(Chris B @ Jul 29 2006, 10:03 PM)

I kinda agree with you on nude scenes. Today they are overdone and I believe used to gain attention and in Dakota's case Oscar buzz, kinda like Halle Berry in Monster's Ball.

I saw a potentially good film with Anne Hathaway called Havoc. The good script was ruined all of these unnessasary nude scenes. Another character was gang raped with very little nudity, but they made a point of giving Hathaway nude scenes throughout the movie. It was her "I'm an adult and stepping away from Disney" role. I hate that stuff.

In the case of a serious movie about child abuse, I say less is more. Showing less is always more powerful in a story and forces the actors to go even deeper to convey the right emotions. I saw a film called Mysterious Skin about two little boys who were raped and the director shot it in a way that the kids wouldn't even know what the scenes were about. There was no nudity and lots was left to the imagination.

I recommend you guys see it, I'm sure it's better than this piece of crap. Plus I hate any movie that admits that they're courting an Oscar.

I totally agree! In the 1950s and such they put out some surprisingly good films that, because you couldn't see something, it made it THAT more disturbing.

Anyway, I was shocked when I saw screencaps from the Hathaway movie. I mean, my goodness. that was uncalled for. I lost a great deal of respect for her when I saw that, because like you said, it's obvious it was JUST because that was her 'I'm no longer a Disney star' role.

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Reading this reminds me of a made-for-cable moving starring Jenna Malone and Jennifer Jason Leigh. I think the movie was called Bastard Out of Carolina (or something like that). In that movie, Jenna Malone's character, who was aged 12 or possibly younger, was raped by her stepfather. The scene was very disturbing but there was no nudity involved. It was a powerful movie directed by Anjelica Huston.

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I think it's really disturbing that a mother and an agent believe that winning an Oscar is so important for a 12 year-old, and that she has to be fake-raped in order to get that award. Whatever happened to just saying the lines with feeling and emotion, and conveying thoughts and feelings through words and body language?

Has the Academy gotten such a hard-on for actors and actresses that play victims and perform explicit sex scenes that these are the roles they have to take to get respect? In that case, the woman from "I Spit On Your Grave" should have won Best Actress.

The thing is today, many filmmakers think showing every gory detail is what works, but not showing it can be even more powerful.

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She's only 12 and doing nude scenes? Yeah, that's really disgusting. Normally, people who watch that get arrested. To me, nudity is often a distraction in a movie. There's no need for it in most cases.

Winning an Oscar at that age is totally unnecessary. Once you win an Oscar, what else can you do? Win another one? You're always going to have to top yourself, so if she's only 12, it's going to run out very quickly.

I think it was Kate Winslet who said that she was glad that she hasn't won an Oscar yet, because she wouldn't have anything else to strive for.

Look what happened to Tatum O'Neil. She won the Oscar when she was really young, and she definitely didn't turn into a successful actress at all.

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Winning an Oscar at that age is totally unnecessary. Once you win an Oscar, what else can you do? Win another one? You're always going to have to top yourself, so if she's only 12, it's going to run out very quickly.

She could win another one, like Hilary Swank.(?)

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On the subject of young actors winning Oscars, Tatum O'Neal won one and I believe it was for a comedy! And then you have Anna Paquin who I believe won when she was younger.

I hope this backfires against her and she doesn't even get an Oscar nod. He mom should feel ashamed for pimping her daughter out like this.

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B)-->

QUOTE(Chris B @ Jul 30 2006, 11:12 PM)

On the subject of young actors winning Oscars, Tatum O'Neal won one and I believe it was for a comedy! And then you have Anna Paquin who I believe won when she was younger.

I hope this backfires against her and she doesn't even get an Oscar nod. He mom should feel ashamed for pimping her daughter out like this.

I'm just shocked that Dakota, whom I always considered the consummate professional in Hollywood, is doing this. THis is a horrible turn for her career. I hope it doesn't kill said career because she truly is a phenomenon, but I hope she learns a HUGE lesson after this.

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This is a hot discussion on other message boards I visit and the majority of those posters got upset at others who thought it was a bad idea. If they think naked 12 year-olds getting brutally raped in movies is art and something worth seeing, fine by them, but I'll seek a different kind of entertainment. And this is coming from someone who loves horror movies.

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It sounds like a shock value publicity stunt to me. I have a bad feeling it's just going to come off as exploitive. AND if rumors are true about Dakota Fanning starring in The Lovely Bones, that will be two ridiculously sad and brutally challenging roles.

I'm just excited for her to be the voice of Coraline :lol:

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There was a special on VH1 about hollywood parents and how they were responding to their child's fame. This sounds like another one of those cases. I'll be staying as far away from this as possible. This is just sick. 12 years old and she is doing nude and rape scenes? How could something like this even get funded?

It just goes to show. Hollywood will whore itself on anything for the almighty dollar. I hope she comes out of this ok, and I hope she still has a strong upbringing, so she won't be another tragic child star who burnt out too quickly.

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It's an indie film right? How could it NOT get financed. (And, what do you expect? Indies get away with anything.)

This is dispicable. Hopefully some extremist organization will attend the movie premiere and 'BOO' her. Perhaps then she would realize that this, LITTLE GIRL, is NOT right.

Again, this is dispicable.

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