If you followed the news about production on Natalie Portman’s independent western, Jane Got A Gun, you could be forgiven for coming to the conclusion that this film was a lost cause. Despite the undeniable potential of this project, production has been dogged by delaying problems from the start – including almost farcical casting issues, a lawsuit, and a bankrupt distribution company. It is a wonder that Jane has survived the setbacks that seemed enough to bring any fledgling movie to its knees.
The Jane Got a Gun international trailer shown above (see above) may raise hope for any doubter’s expectations that production issues destroy quality. Oscar-winner Portman in the lead role as determined frontier wife, Jane Hammond, aims and fires in her welcome return to the big screen. Take a look for yourself.
Jane Got A Gun finds the Hammond family in dire circumstance when outlaw Bill Hammond (Noah Emmerich) is wounded in a gunfight with a gang of bandits from the character’s past. It is left up to his tough wife Jane to protect her family’s lives with the reluctant help of her ex fiance Dan Frost (Joel Edgerton). The movie stars Ewan McGregor as the lead bandit, with Roderigo Santoro (300) and Boyd Holbrook (Gone Girl) featuring as gang members.
The movie originally had Lynne Ramsay (We Need To Talk About Kevin) as its director after she was hand picked by Portman, but Ramsay walked on day one of shooting – which led to the aforementioned lawsuit. She was replaced by Gavin O’Connor (Warrior), but filming was put on hold while adjustments were made to the screenplay. The delay led to Jude Law leaving the project – which suffered issues securing the male cast members from the beginning (Michael Fassbender and Bradley Cooper were also once attached to this project). More recently, the movie was dropped by Relativity (due to the studio’s financial struggles) and was acquired by the Weinstein Company for distribution.
That all being said, Jane Got a Gun did, in fact, eventually get made, as evidenced by the international trailer and poster (see below).
The female led western is a rare movie indeed – and although production issues of this multitude do not usually bode well, a lot of people will have been rooting for Jane Got A Gun regardless. There are ironic parallels between Portman’s behind the scenes struggles on this project and the subject matter at hand. Portman may’ve even drawn on the frustration that making this movie must have caused and channeled it into her performance (as a fierce mother protecting her family against all odds). The film’s trailer certainly suggests the caliber we have come to expect from her roles, set against impressive looking cinematography.
In spite of setbacks and the hugely talented Portman aside, Jane Got A Gun managed to scrape together a stellar cast and escape the purgatory of distributor dissolution. The film’s concept is strong and the trailer suggests an authentic piece of storytelling that could surprise us all.
Jane Got A Gun will be released in Europe on November 25th, 2015. Its U.S theatrical release is tentatively slated for February 2016.
Source: The Weinstein Company