Mark Wahlberg sat down to play card games and dish about his new movie “The Gambler” with USA Today’s reporter Donna Freydkin. You can check out the 2-minute video below. Enjoy!
“Access Hollywood” — Mark Wahlberg isn’t all that surprised by the Sony hack and subsequent unpleasant information released about executives’ opinions on stars.
“Nothing is private these days and if you have something to say about somebody, you know, be able to say it to their face,” Mark told Access Hollywood at the junket for his new movie, “The Gambler,” when asked about the Sony hack.
The 43-year-old actor said he’s seen executives speak very bluntly about talent when making decisions, so he wasn’t shocked to see harsh opinions in leak e-mails.
“I personally – because now I’m on the other side of things where I’m, as an actor and as a producer, I’m on the other side of the casting table – I’ve been in the room with studio heads and people who make real decisions who are often talking about — and not very pleasantly! – about people, their ability or lack thereof,” he said.
Adding, “And it was frightening to me because I thought, ‘Well hey, this is probably what they’re saying about me when I’m not in the room.'”
While no one wants to hear negative things said about themselves, Mark said his line of work requires that people “have tough skin.”
“I wouldn’t take it personally if they said something negative about me. It is what it is,” he said. “It’s part of the business. And I’m lucky enough to have my job.
“You’ve gotta have tough skin, and you’re constantly being critiqued with your work no matter how passionate [you are] or how much you put in to it,” he said. “But I can understand why people are sensitive about it too.”
“The Gambler” is a remake of the famous 1974 film starring James Caan, and Mark explained what makes their film different from the original.
“Most gamblers are about the thrill, and that was the debate that I would have with James Tovack who was the writer and inspiration for the original. He is the gambler. He is all about the thrill and doesn’t feel alive unless he has action,” Mark said. “And that was very much Jimmy Caan in the original movie, but we wanted to do something different, while paying respect to the original and being inspired by that we still wanted to make it our own.”
And James Caan approved of the remake wholeheartedly.
“He loved it. He had tears in his eyes,” Mark said of James’ reaction. “He came to my home, he had a meal and then watched the movie. He loved it. He was so supportive of me making the movie. And then he’s been out there now talking about the movie helping me promote it. When you get that kind of stamp of approval you don’t need much else.”
“The Gambler” hits theaters on Christmas Day.
“Indie Wire” — It seems a Hollywood project is never more than one or two steps away from Mark Wahlberg’s involvement. The past decade has seen the actor steadily grow into a producing force (“Entourage,” “Prisoners”) while still maintaining his studio-reliable leading man status (“Transformers: Age of Extinction,” “Ted”), but as with “The Fighter,” the smaller projects sometimes present the harder challenge. The most recent example is “The Gambler,” “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” director Rupert Wyatt’s remake of the 1974 Jimmy Caan original, and it’s easy to see why – it’s an unconventional gambling flick, in which a college Literature professor attempts to burn his finances to the ground to see what’s left.
At an AFI Fest screening of the film (our review here) and a roundtable discussion the next day, Wahlberg explained that the title was a bit misleading when it came to his character, Jim Bennett. “I didn’t see him as having a gambling addiction,” he said. “I feel like he just chose gambling as the way to strip himself of all those things that were holding him back from finding out who he was, and what he could be doing with his life.” For more of Wahlberg’s thoughts on the film, which co-stars John Goodman, Brie Larson, and Jessica Lange, as well as his slate of upcoming projects including J.C. Chandor’s “Blackwater Horizon,” take a look below.
On Reading William Monahan’s Script For “The Gambler”
I read it on the plane and I immediately started reading lines out loud, and you start realizing that it’s going to attract some great talent because they all have these opportunities to come in and showcase their abilities in pretty cool ways. John Goodman, Jessica Lange, all those guys. I normally have to go out and court people but the material really attracted people.
I’ve had some fairly bad experiences with remakes in the past and I was trying to stay away from them for a little while. But then we had a good experience with “The Italian Job,” and then I read the script. I’m a huge fan of Monahan, we worked together on “The Departed” and he wrote “American Desperado” for us, I was in this movie he directed called “Mojave.” We have a great rapport and I loved the part… It felt like it was cool and different and we could make it our own while still paying respect to the original.
On Convincing The Original ‘Gambler’ Lead and Screenwriter
I showed [screenwriter of the ’74 original] James Toback the movie early on actually when he came to Boston — I had to get him on my own turf in case he didn’t like the movie. He loved it, although there’s obviously certain things that he’s never going to really love about the movie because he has his own that he’s very proud of. And I also invited Jimmy Caan over to my house. We talked about the project beforehand, we worked together on “The Yards” and we have a great relationship, but I wanted to show him and have him like it. Coincidentally I have a row of pictures in my basement with some of my favorite actors — James Cagney, Steve McQueen, John Garfield, and Jimmy Caan. Someone had given me it as a gift and he saw it and said, “Did you put that up because you knew I was coming over?”
Mark Wahlberg stopped by “Live with Kelly & Michael” on his promotional tour this past Friday morning (December 12) for his new film “The Gambler”. You can check out the 7-minute interview below, as well as 394 high definition screen captures. Enjoy!
Screen Captures > Talk Shows > Talk Shows from 2014 > Dec 12: “Live with Kelly & Michael”
Mark Wahlberg stopped by “The Today Show” on his promotional tour earlier this Friday morning (December 12) for his new film “The Gambler”. You can check out the 6-minute interview below, as well as 289 screen captures from the interview. Enjoy!
Screen Captures > Talk Shows > Talk Shows from 2014 > Dec 12: “The Today Show”
Mark Wahlberg stopped by “Late Night with Seth Meyers” last night (December 11) to promote his new film “The Gambler.” You can check out a short clip from the interview below, as well as 537 high definition screen captures of Mark from the interview. Enjoy!
Screen Captures > Talk Shows > Talk Shows from 2014 > Dec 11: Late Night with Seth Meyers