You’ve seen the trailer for the soon-to-be-released Shutter Island, directed by Martin Scorsese. But did you know it was shot almost entirely in the Boston area? Excluding a documentary on The Rolling Stones, Scorsese has most recently brought us the academy award winning film, The Departed, which was also famously filmed in Boston. Based on the novel by Dennis Lehane, who is himself a Boston native, Shutter Island has an all-star cast and is sure to keep viewers on the edge of their seats.
“Someone is missing.” That is the publicized tagline for the dramatic thriller set in 1954 at a secluded island off the coast of Boston. Shot mostly in or around the Boston Harbor (including Peddocks Island), the creepy Medfield State Hospital campus, and the scenic Acadia Nat’l Park in Maine, Shutter Island marks the fourth collaboration between Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio.
DiCaprio plays Teddy Daniels, a U.S. Marshal investigating the recent disappearance of a woman incarcerated for murder at a hospital for the criminally insane, which is located on Shutter Island. She vanished from her room overnight and is supposedly hiding somewhere on the premises. Daniels’s search for the woman uncovers terrible mysteries that the doctors and staff would rather keep quiet. Is that another fake Boston accent we hear Leo attempting? When asked about what it was like working with Scorsese, DiCaprio said in this interview, “he expects you to do all the research” and “it’s a really empowering process when someone gives you full ownership over the character.” In addition to DiCaprio, the cast includes Ben Kingsley, Mark Ruffalo, Emily Mortimer, and Patricia Clarkson.
With such classics as Taxi Driver and Cape Fear under his belt, Scorsese is not inexperienced with the darker side of cinematic storytelling. However, he’s taking a slightly different turn with his new plot-based and genre-oriented film. “I tried to pull back a few times and not get so emotionally and psychologically involved,” says Scorsese of the filming, as quoted in the Los Angeles Times. “But this story, these characters — it was a very unsettling experience.”
Scorsese wasn’t the only person affected by the project, as DiCaprio also fell victim to the intensity of the production. “It was draining,” says DiCaprio. “It got to the point where it became more and more realistic the deeper it got – swerving away from anything stylistic and becoming more about human nature.” In fact, a psychologist was deemed necessary to be on the set during filming due to the emotional demands on the actors.
Having come a long way from the blockbuster Titanic in 1997 – which launched him into the public eye – Leonardo DiCaprio has established himself as one of Hollywood’s most sought after leading men. He has appeared in over 20 films throughout his career, taking on challenging roles that have only added to his popularity. DiCaprio’s partnership with Scorsese has lead to three critically acclaimed films, and their newest will likely join those ranks.
Shutter Island overcame a postponement from its original planned release in October 2009, moving it to February 2010. Though this removes it as a contender for the 2010 Oscars, the film is open to nomination for the following year.
Whether it will truly become a classic and grabs some Oscars like so many others of Scorsese’s films still remains to be seen. And yet DiCaprio seems confident, saying, “There were moments on set where I definitely felt like we were going into uncharted territory.” Only time will tell if the unique experience the actors had making the film translates to the screen.
Shutter Island opens nationwide February 19th, 2010.
John Cena, who got his start as a professional wrestling superstar, is venturing into new territory with a part in the drama Brother’s Keeper. One of the newer endeavors from WWE Films, the movie is a change of pace from some of the previous projects produced by the same company.
Cena was born in West Newbury, MA, and made a career in professional wrestling before trying out his hand at acting in 2006 in The Marine, and again in 2009 in 12 Rounds. Cena, who is married to Elizabeth Huberdeau, certainly hasn’t forgotten his roots, though, as he’s forgone the regular path of living in Hollywood and is taking up residence back in his hometown. Perhaps best known as an action hero from his first two movies, both of which focused on his physical abilities, Cena is taking advantage of the chance to show us something a little different.
Brother’s Keeper is about a teenage boy trying to reunite his broken family by joining a high school wrestling team. Cena plays the older brother, a former collegiate wrestling champion, who fell into a downward spiral after his father died and later returns home to see his younger sibling compete. Brother’s Keeper also stars Patricia Clarkson, Danny Glover and Devon Graye and will undoubtedly give Cena the opportunity to flex his dramatic skills and put him on the map as a real actor.
According to the Eagle Tribune, John Cena is excited about his character and is enjoying the challenge of a more serious role. “I feel like I’ve been able to get involved in the story,” Cena says, “and it’s an easy story to embrace. I think everybody will be able to pull something from it.”
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