The Weinstein Co. unveiled its upcoming slate at a market presentation in the Cannes Majestic Hotel on Friday afternoon, with COO David Glasser introducing Harvey Weinstein, who in turn introduced his stars in the room — Ryan Reynolds and Naomi Watts. Variety attended and graded some of the strongest and weakest trailers that debuted. Many of these films don’t have release dates yet, though the more Oscar-friendly fare will likely open before the end of the year.
“Macbeth”: Michael Fassbender gave the best trailer performance of the bunch as the future king of Scotland, in what looks like his most scenery-chewing (in a good way) role yet. As Jada Yuan at Vulture noted, the story looks like the Shakespeare tragedy told through the lens of “Braveheart (but again, in a good way). My one quibble: Marion Cotillard is barely seen as Lady Macbeth, a role that should dominate the film.
“Big Eyes”: This — fingers crossed! — could be a return to the ’90s Tim Burton we all knew and loved, and not the man who made “Dark Shadows” and “Alice in Wonderland.” Then again, there are some cheesier scenes with characters and enormous eyes that don’t look promising in the dramedy about Margaret Keane, the artist who painted the famous “Big Eyes” paintings. Amy Adams, in a blonde bob, is already generating Oscar buzz in next year’s best actress race.
“Suite Francaise”: Also please add Michelle Williams to that list for this epic-looking World War II romance based on the novel by Irene Nemirovsky. The film (written and directed by Saul Dibb, who made the underrated “The Duchess”) co-stars Kristen Scott Thomas, no stranger to the awards circuit.
“St. Vincent De Van Nuys”: There were some laughs, but I had no idea what was happening in this trailer, with Bill Murray channeling himself, Melissa McCarthy looking more serious and Naomi Watts as a Russian stripper. It opens in October.
“The Giver”: It’s hard to know where to start on this adaptation of a well-known young adult novel by Lois Lowry. Meryl Streep has “Lord of the Rings” hair. Katie Holmes scowls. Jeff Bridges is in it too? There’s a “Divergent” vibe to the acting, and that’s not meant as a compliment. I didn’t spot Taylor Swift, though I might have missed her.
“The Imitation Game”: Benedict Cumberbatch as Alan Turing, yelling at Keira Knightley.
“Paddington”: The beloved children’s book character written by Michael Bond looks more like a sequel to “Yogi Bear.” But families might flock to this holiday film.
“Southpaw”: Weinstein also debuted a short scene from the Antoine Fuqua boxing drama, featuring Jake Gyllenhaal. It mostly felt like a Nike ad with guys training in the gym. But, on the plus side, Gyllenhaal’s abs have never looked better.