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Jun 6th
12:10 am
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From The Wrap:
Zac Efron In Negotiations to Star in Max Joseph's Untitled DJ Project (Exclusive)

Working Title is producing the movie, which is set in the world of electronic dance music

Hot off the stunning success of “Neighbors,” Zac Efron is in negotiations to star in Max Joseph's untitled DJ project that will be produced by Working Title, multiple individuals familiar with the project have told TheWrap.

Written by Joseph and Meaghan Oppenheimer, the coming-of-age story follows a young DJ as he works on what he hopes is his first hit track.

Joseph is an up-and-coming filmmaker who co-hosts MTV's “Catfish” with Nev Schulman. The untitled DJ project will serve as his feature directorial debut following his award-winning “Follow the Frog” commercial and the acclaimed short documentary “12 Years of DFA Records.”

The director is currently auditioning hot young actors and actresses for the other lead roles, as shooting will begin this July in Los Angeles.

Working Title's untitled DJ movie won't be Joseph's first foray into the world of electronic music, as he previously directed the Aaron Weber-produced short documentary “12 Years of DFA Records: Too Old to be New, Too New to be Classic.” Released in 2013, “12 Years” recently screened at SXSW and received critical acclaim within both the film and music industries.

Here is the director's commercial mentioned in the article:

He also made a commercial for Toms. LOL

Here is also the short documentary "12 Years of DFA Records: Too Old To Be New, Too New To Be Classic"

More of his work on his website: http://www.maxjoseph.com/
17 17 comments Comment
laurenlipkinlip on June 5th, 2014 10:12 pm (UTC)
sounds interesting.
Miranda gives everyone a chancemirandagirll on June 5th, 2014 10:21 pm (UTC)
Is it weird I'm enjoying the fact one of the writers is a woman?
Bee: Zac - Interview Mag w/ woman coloredjeezbee on June 5th, 2014 10:25 pm (UTC)
First off, yeah for new work, esp for filming to start soon. That's a major plus.

Working Title is a good production company so that's good too.

I'm not familiar with writers or director, so I can't say much there and the premise doesn't blow me away but I guess there are worse projects out there. And since this is not a studio project, it won't be a make-or-break project; looks a bit like a filler to me but that's fine. I think it's important for Zac to get back to work and this accomplishes that. The other casting is going to be important though... it will determine in how the film is perceived.

I hope Zac has more luck with his first-time director. The other two haven't worked out that well, critically.

I'm a tiny bit worried about the premise around EDM having triggers for him but I guess I just have to trust him there and hope for the best.

Edited at 2014-06-05 10:35 pm (UTC)
laurenlipkinlip on June 5th, 2014 10:42 pm (UTC)
can you explain your last sentence tho? how does dance music do that for someone whos in recovery when its just a movie?
Beejeezbee on June 5th, 2014 11:03 pm (UTC)
It's really hard to explain in a few sentences. I recommend reading up on the topic. Google will bring you plenty of results.

Generally speaking, environments in which an addict used to consume drugs/alcohol heavily and hence the brain associates with the substance abuse can trigger cravings simply by being in similar situations/around similar people.

But as I said, I hope Zac knows what he's doing. And he also needs to learn dealing with it/them; he can't always avoid them all.
kleth on June 6th, 2014 06:41 pm (UTC)
It is good that it's on a movie set. But the music and the scenes should ring some bells from all his clubbing nights.

That aside, jeezbee is right. He's got to develop resistance, as someone in the movie business and living in L.A., he's going to run into these situations all the time. I was worried about the after-screening parties for Neighbors at SxSW, where he had to stand around sipping his orange juice and looking like he was having a good time.
kleth on June 6th, 2014 06:37 pm (UTC)
"...yeah for new work, esp for filming to start soon."

Don't get too excited. This is another "in negotiation" story, like the recent "being looked at" report.
Bee: Zac – Details - plaid - profilejeezbee on June 6th, 2014 09:17 pm (UTC)
The way this is announced and given the timeline and other circumstances, this is very likely happening. It might slip into August or something but this is not a development project or a simple rumor.
annabelle83 on June 5th, 2014 10:43 pm (UTC)
We don't have much information about this new project, but I'm so happy it's not a romance flick. And it's being produced by Working Title. That sounds very promising in terms of getting a wide release.
Beejeezbee on June 5th, 2014 10:51 pm (UTC)
I'm super happy it's not a romance too. That's certainly a big plus as well.
kleth on June 6th, 2014 06:35 pm (UTC)
But what is it? The story premise may be so vague or impossible to market that it just won't sell, for distribution or for box office.
Beejeezbee on June 6th, 2014 09:25 pm (UTC)
If it were a romance (drama or comedy) we would see a hint in the short logline already. Sure, there might be some romantic entanglement in the story but that's not the focus. It looks like a normal drama to me. Obviously, the logline isn't telling us much but that's the case with most projects. As usual, a lot depends on the actual script and execution. And while you never really know the outcome beforehand... the people involved from writer, director, producers to cast is often giving you some indication. Writer and director are sort of newbies which obviously bears a high risk. The perceived quality of the other actors will give you typically a better idea (eg some CW alumni versus a little known but appreciated indie darling) about the project's potential.

I'm actually in favor of this not being a big project since I don't think it's going to be all that great. But I don't know where you get that it's not marketable; it's not a studio project where you need to sell millions of tickets. Quality and cast aside, this actually sounds more commercial for an indie than many others I see on a daily base.

Edited at 2014-06-06 10:00 pm (UTC)
kleth on June 7th, 2014 07:02 pm (UTC)
I'm just thinking about the recent comparison of TAM and Neighbors in the marketing department. In interviews, even the stars had a hard time explaining what TAM was all about. But several reviewers noted that the Neighbors premise, "townies at war with frat guys" was easy to communicate and advertise.

I don't mind Untitled Project being a little movie, but even little movies need some kind of decent distribution to earn back their cost (and present Our Boy to the masses). Neither At Any Price nor The Paperboy managed to get into 200 theaters. It's hard to advance a career on that kind of action.

Haha. Am I the only one who sees the irony in an "untitled project" being produced by a company called Working Title?
Beejeezbee on June 8th, 2014 01:49 pm (UTC)
Neither At Any Price nor The Paperboy managed to get into 200 theaters. It's hard to advance a career on that kind of action.

I totally disagree with you there. You need to let go of the idea that higher # of theaters = better. You need to focus on quality of the movie over quantity of distribution, esp with indies.

TAM got a wide distribution and didn't advance his career at all. On the contrary, if it weren't for Neighbors it would have damaged it.

I would argue that The Paperboy and At Any Price helped him more than TAM by far. And neither of those movies did even turn out that well qualitywise, although still way better than TAM. Btw the quality was the reason why they only got into small number of theaters, not their premise.

Take Brie Larsen and Short Term 12 - tiny movie most people probably haven't even heard of; never got into more than 75 theaters. But it was great and so was Brie's performance and THAT got her many new and bigger roles.

Want his career to do well? Focus on the quality of his projects, esp for indies. Instead of fretting about distribution, worry about director, script and cast of this project. Neighbors was highly marketable but it would not have done that much for him if it wasn't good as well.

That's how you advance a career: making GOOD movies and giving GOOD performances (good as in perceived good by the majority of critics and industry). Then the distribution comes by itself.
kleth on June 9th, 2014 05:52 pm (UTC)
I agree, really good movies that fail to win distribution can help Zac's career on the inside game - he gets talked about by the director and fellow cast members, some insiders see the movie and admire his performance.

At the same time, slack-jawed reviewers slam him for making a movie that "failed" because it wasn't widely distributed. This is how Zac can get a public reputation for making "flops", even though they may be good movies.

You are right, a good movie without wide distribution is better than a bad movie in 3,000 theaters, but I would prefer to see him in good movies that get wide release. I want him to have a high industry reputation and mass appeal.

Edited at 2014-06-09 05:54 pm (UTC)
kleth on June 9th, 2014 06:16 pm (UTC)
Getting back to the problem of marketing a movie with a vague premise, here's an example from this weekend, Box Office Mojo's assessment of Tom Cruise's Edge of Tomorrow:

"While critics have been praising the movie's originality, marketing wasn't really able to convey that point to average moviegoers."
kleth on June 7th, 2014 07:13 pm (UTC)
Neighbors is still Number 7 at the box office, even with all the superhero, sci-fi, and romance competition.

Now standing at $213 million worldwide. Hits are better than misses.