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25th Hour

Cast: Edward Norton, Rosario Dawson, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Brian Cox, Barry Pepper, Anna Paquin

Director: Spike Lee

Screenwriter: David Benioff (based on his first novel)

Filming start date: around May 13, 2002

Filming end date: around mid July

Filming location: New York City

Release Date: Dec 19th (NY/LA), Jan 10th (nationwide)

The novel 25th Hour is now available in paperback with the theatrical poster on the front cover

Summary: It depicts the last day of freedom for a young man (EN) before he begins serving a seven-year jail term for drug dealing. Prowling through the city until dawn with his two close male friends (Hoffman and Pepper) and his girlfriend (Dawson), he is forced to re-examine his life and how he got himself into his predicament, which leads to a shocking, disturbing final

25th Hour Oscar ad 25th Hour Oscar ad 25th Hour Oscar ad 25th Hour Oscar ad

25th Hour official site

Buena Vista For Your Consideration site

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Latest News

2/12/03 25th Hour will be shown today in competition at the Berlin Film Festival along with a press conference. I believe that EN will be present but I can't state that for certain.

1/25/03 25th Hour will be shown in competition at the Berlin Film Festival, which runs from February 6-16. There is no word as to whether EN will go to the festival.

1/20/03 If you missed EN and Spike Lee Jan 10th appearance on The Charlie Rose Show, an audioclip is now available at Charlie Rose Show website.

1/10/03 LAST MIUTE ANNOUNCEMENT- TONIGHT's Charlie Rose Show will feature EN and Spike Lee talking about 25th Hour which opens today nationwide. There might be articles/reviews on the film in your local newspapers and a few mentions on the entertainment news programs (ET,Access Hollywood, E! News) tonight if you're interested. Toronto Sun has an article on EN - Working Serious Hours plus there is another article on 25th Hour and the decision to include a post 9/11 vision of NYC. Spike Lee delivers a cinematic love letter to New York (article is published in a number of newspapers under diff titles)

12/20/02 The Associated Press has posted a favorable review At the Movies: '25th Hour'. For a good look at what all critics are saying about the film, check out the Rotten Tomatoes 25th Hour Page

12/19/02 Thursday's NY Times and LA Times contain reviews on 25th Hour. The NYT review is favorable, the LA Times is not. NYT review: Confronting the Past Before Going to Prison and LA Times: Two movies warring in one

12/18/02 EN has received a best actor Golden Satellite nomination (given out by the International Press Association) for his performance in 25th Hour with Robin Williams ("One Hour Photo"), Jack Nicholson ("About Schmidt"), Daniel Day-Lewis ("Gangs of New York"), and Michael Caine ("The Quiet American") also receiving nominations in this category . EN has previously won a Golden Satellite for American History X.

12/16/02 PM Update- I posted images from the 25th Hour Premiere

12/15/02- CHUD has posted 6 different QuickTime video clips from 25th Hour. 25th Hour video clips. Today's New York Times includes an interview with Spike Lee and Edward Norton and includes a picture of both (you'll have to go to the article directly, the NYT is very testy about permissions so I can't post them) Box Office He Wants, Not a Drink

12/14/02 Variety has given 25th hour a favorable review. There may be some minor plot spoilers, so just be aware. 25th Hour Variety Review. EN will be making the following TV appearances to promote the film: this Wednesday, Dec 18 on both the Early show and on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart (his Death to Smoochy costar), and on December 26th he will be on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. There may be additional appearances in the coming weeks (these dates above may also tend to shift- appearances dates tend to be rather mercurial). Thanks to Joanne for finding out about all these appearances!. The December 19th release date for 25th Hour has come with the notation of a limited release (tends to indicate only some selected cities). It may be more than just limited: the press release announcing the world premiere (which is on Monday) states that the December 19th date is valid only for New York and Los Angeles and that it will go nationwide on Friday, January 10th, 2002. You may want to stop by the 25th Hour official site. In addition to the downloads, trailer and flash presentations for each hour, detailed production notes and cast bios have been posted (although they refer to EN as "Ed" in the bio section, when he prefers "Edward"). There are two interesting Newsweek articles on 25th Hour costar Philip Seymour Hoffman (who also costarred with EN in Red Dragon) - A Few Good Scenes and Character Counts

12/13/02 Newsweek online has a web exclusive article on 25th Hour costar Philip Seymour Hoffman- Character Counts

12/12/02 More Oscar ads are out, so check your local bookstore for the The Hollywood Reporter and Variety or else you may end up at the mercy of an eBay seller to get one. Yet another favorable group of 25th Hour reviews at AICN including a description of a Q&A with Spike Lee at a DGA screening. The World premiere of 25th Hour is Monday, December 16th at the Ziegfeld Theatre in NYC. You won't be able to see the film, you probably won't be able to get an autograph, but if you want to stand out in the cold for a fleeting glimpse of EN, good luck to you. Take a look at the release that was sent out to the news agencies World Premiere of Touchstone Pictures' 25th Hour

12/6/02Yahoo! Movies 25th Hour has A TON of NEW Pictures. Yahoo! Movies 25th Hour Aint-it-Cool News has a report from someone who was at a London screening of 25th Hour that included a Q&A with Spike Lee. AICN 25th Hour report. If you're interested in getting the Oscar ad for "25th Hour", you should buy the weekly edition of The Hollywood Reporter Nov 26-Dec 2 "Golden Globes preview" issue. You can buy the whole issue for about $5 and they're probably available at one of the bookstores with a large newsstand area like Borders or Barnes and Noble. There are already a few eBay sellers who are auctioning the 25th Hour ad alone for more than that.

12/2/02- L.A. Times (12/2/02) has an article on 25th Hour screenwriter/novelist David Benioff His finest hour

11/27/02 Buena Vista has started promoting 25th Hour for Oscar consideration. Among the rotating ads on the Hollywood Reporter website are ones featuring the image of EN with the dog (as in the 25th Hour poster) with the ads linking to Buena Vista For Your Consideration site with info on 25th Hour along with other films. Currently, the site contains no new info on the film, but I thought I'd mention the Oscar push. Please note that the screenings mentioned on the site are for members of certain organizations that are eligible to vote on awards. They are not for the general public and require reservations and identification for entry, so don't just show up and expect to get in. Oscar print ads have also start appearing in the trade papers (Variety and Hollywood Reporter) for Oscar promotion. These are usually very well done and cost thousands of dollars for inclusion so you might want to take a look for them.

11/15/02 25th Hour official site has expanded to include a flash presentation, desktop wallpaper downloads, and a synopsis (as well as the trailer). There are also images from the film and flash presentations hidden by the 25 hours on the website. 25th Hour official site.

11/14/02Premiere Dec 2002 has an interview (w/pic) with EN about the film: Class Acts: Edward Norton

11/8/02 The world premiere of the film will be held at NYC's Ziegfeld Theater Monday Dec 16th. Also The New York Times Magazine published a series of "How to" articles with a "How to Maintain Continuity" article with advice from Shari Carpenter, script supervisor on 25th Hour. How to... [Thanks to Steph!]

10/14/02 The trailer is now online at the precursor to the 25th Hour official website

9/29/02 Aint It Cool News has posted two reviews from a recent test screening of the film

8/23/02 Latino Review has posted two new images from the film

8/16/02 Entertainment Weekly Fall Movie Preview issue (with Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz and Daniel Day-Lewis on the cover) includes a summary and info on the film.

8/8/02 Premiere Magazine includes a section on the film

7/2/02 I received an email from Mike, who was an extra on The 25th Hour and wrote up this wonderful, detailed report. Some of the details of what goes on in the scene may be PLOT SPOILERS, just to warn you. Here it is:

Sunday, June 30, 2002 Director Spike Lee, Ed Norton and Rosario Dawson and a whole slew of NYC, NY and local crew started filming some scenes in... Granger, Texas. Some minor setbacks like rain and what one NYC crew person called "tornadoes"... Hah! it was just a fierce wind bringing in the rainclouds- setback shooting for maybe an hour or so. Them Yankees! Hah! One scene was of the exterior of a run-down ol' diner/bar where a mustached Ed Norton pulls a "help-wanted" sign from the window... presumably to apply for a job. Not sure what's really going on...they like to keep us extras in the dark. That way we wander around in circles, be where we aren't suppose to be, bump into walls and trip over wires and stuff. It amuses the Production Assistants, especially the ones that have to babysit us.

During the rain, They shot some interior footage, which I didn't see.. I, and about 6 or 7 extras were just waiting around outside across the street, however, a lot of the other extras were inside during that shot. I happened to talk with the bar owner later that day and he said they removed all the "Texas" references in the bar, and some other regional stuff except for maybe a few LoneStar beer bottle here or there. So who knows where this bar is suppose to be in the movie.... it could be anywhere.

Then a quick-change of clothes for Edward Norton - off with the mustache, and he is sitting on a bench in front of the bar/diner. Apparently he is just sitting and thinking long and hard about something important for the scene took several minutes, with a few extras walking by, entering the bar, etc. I even got to be one of the people walking in front of him.

Another scene was a bus scene in the town where Ed Norton greets Rosario Dawson with some flowers as she gets off the bus. I was also one of the passengers/extras in the bus sitting about 8 rows behind the really cute and friendly Rosario Dawson. All the bus did was drive up to a spot. Stop. And let Rosario off, and an extra onto, the bus and drive up the block, letting Ed Norton and Rosario Dawson do their acting bits. Then the bus backed all the way down the street to it's starting spot (picking up Rosario and leaving the extra) and the process started up all over again for about 4 or 5 takes. Extras were driving pick-up trucks around and around.

That was the end of that days shoot. Everybody was happy because it was an early wrap, the sun was still up, and the rain didn't hamper shooting hardly at all. And we all got to see a train. Yep that was actually an exciting thing to do... watching the train.Yay!

Monday, they shoot some more in Granger in and in front of the tattoo parlor, but I couldn't make it. :o(

Here's some littler bits:
1) Everybody was very friendly. The crew, the actors and the townpeople! We extras were well taken care of and it seemed that everybody did their jobs efficiently and professionally. During lunch everybody ate the same good food in the same make-shift dining area (In the S.P.J.S.T. Lodge building... a high-ceiling structure that was built in 1909... which also doubled as the extras "holding pen."). I was pleasantly surprised to see that Spike Lee, Ed Norton, and Rosario Dawson (maybe.. I wasn't sure who she was at the time.. eep!) just waited in line and ate with the crew and of course, us extras. No egos here..... well.. there was a pecking order.... cast and crew got to get their food first, then us extras got to get in line. Steak, fish, chicken or a veggieplate were the main entree's with plenty of veggies and salads and sides. Yum!
2) At lunch I was surprised how *young* Ed Norton looks. I thought at first he was some tall, thin (but buff) 19-year old kid or maybe his own little brother or something. He was dressed in a sleeveless tee-shirt and slacks and had stopped at a table next to the one I was at to pet and play with some lady's little tiny dog. The dog was sitting in this small bag which looked to be designed to carry the dog.
3) Although we extras couldn't get autographs and picture-taking was discouraged, the town-folk were under no restrictions and I saw several kids getting autographs and pictures. One teen-age girl not only got Spike Lee, Ed Norton and Rosario Dawson's autograph but some of the crew members autographs as well.
4) One local kid, who was unaware of the movie, accidentally rode his bicycle through a shot and Spike Lee liked it and the kid so much, he asked him to do it again and again for each shot of that particular scene... the kid instantly became a paid extra! His dad had to come to the shoot to sign for him, of course!
5) After one scene, I was just standing near a truck, wondering where I was supposed to be, bumping into walls, tripping over wires... y'now..being an extra... when Ed Norton started walking directly toward me! Yikes whatdidIdonow? he gave a little wave as he was walking towards me and I waved back kind of sheepishly and *he* said "Ah! there you are! I was looking for you." Huh? Wha? Oops... turns out his attention was really directed to the attractive (make-up? assistant? --I am not sure of her job) lady (who was the lady with the cute doggy, BTW) who was walking up behind and to the left of me! Hah. Was I a loon! They stopped and chatted about six feet away from me -and Ed Norton just smiled at me like it was a slightly amusing anecdote.. Hey! which it is!
6) During the shooting of the exterior of the diner/bar, we all heard a train whistle behind us. The film crew knew a train was coming and just sort of stood up and stretched or whatever.. except the PA's (Production Assistants) who ran around getting and giving directions and orders on their radiosets. The crew knew that a passing train meant they couldn't get sound and not getting sound meant no shooting until the train passed.
As the train cars were whizzing by it was noticed that the tracks were about half-a-small block up the road, looked kinda cool in a classic smalltown train-crossing kinda way.
Clickity-Clack! Clickity-Clack!
Spike Lee and the Director of Photography got some epiphany of inspiration and decided to get some stock footage of the passing train. Amongst the noise of the passing train, people was scrambling to move a few crew trucks, turn the camera(s), load film and get a light-meter reading while the lookers-on were smiling and giggling at the flurry of all these people hustling to "catch" the train.
The only thing stopping them from getting a great shot was the "do not cross" yellow traffic tape that was used to block people from parking in front of the bar/diner which was in the shot. A hapless PA tried to stay *out* of the shot *and* pull the tape off a pole (which amusingly enough was the "RR Crossing sign-pole) but wouldn't you know it, the darn plastic tape just would not tear or break!
And the train cars continued passing on the tracks.
Clickity-Clack! Clickity-Clack!
So there was Spike Lee yelling above the train noise, "Just Pull it!" and making tug-of-war motions with his arms and body. And there was the DP yelling, "pull it" and making pulling motions, and there was assistants and by-standers and kids and on-lookers and all sorts of people all yelling, "pull the tape" and gesturing wildly. The PA was pulling and pulling, but the tape was just stretching and not breaking, meanwhile the train continued to pass on by.
Then another PA joined the pull-athon and just as the tape finally broke... you guessed it, the final car of the train whizzed on by. A missed shot.
A local man just laughed and said not to worry, there'll be another train in about an hour.
Sure enough, about an hour-maybe two... after the interior of the bar scene was shot, another train passed by, there was another scramble to set the camera in position another scramble to load daylight film, more people running around, but this time they got the train shot! Yay! Will it be used? Who knows it's all up to Spike Lee and his film editor! Heck who knows if ANY of this day's shooting will remain in the film or be lost to the cutting room floor. It was fun nevertheless!

6/20/02 Dark Horizons posted this report on yesterday's 25th Hour filming [Thanks to Joanne for the info!]

The 25th Hour: Its only relatively mundane exterior shooting, but what a line-up was seen on the NYC streets this week and 'The Ideaist' has this report:

"I live on the street (89th Street between Lexington & 3rd Ave.) in which multiple scenes were shot for Spike Lee's movie, "The 25th Hour" on June 19, 2002. At about 6pm or so, a scene taking place outside a brownstone in which Tony Siragusa (former defensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens) was waiting outside until Edward Norton walks out of the brownstone. Tobey Maguire was also on the set during the day shooting. Later on, in the evening (at about 8/9PM) a scene took place involving Barry Pepper, Edward Norton, and Philip Seymour Hoffman was shot. Basically, it's a simple scene in which Barry Pepper, Edward Norton, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman arrive at the very same brownstone in a black Lincoln Towncar, get out, and walk into the brownstone."

6/3/02 - A Boston Herald (5/1/02) interview with Tobey Maguire includes the reason why Maguire decided not to act in The 25th Hour (he is a first-time producer on the film): he is promoting Spiderman worldwide and this conflicted with the filming. Here is his comments on EN and The 25th Hour or read the whole article:

"It's a character study that takes place the day before Ed Norton's character goes to prison for seven years. When it didn't work out for me timewise to do it, we made a list of people and I sent it out to Ed, who was my first choice. I couldn't believe my good fortune for my first time out."

5/7/02 - The Hollywood Reporter reports today that Anna Paquin has joined the cast as Mary D'Annunzio and that filming is scheduled to start in a week. I believe that this is the role that Brittany Murphy was in talks for (since Naturelle and Mary are the only two substative female roles).

5/3/02 AM- The Hollywood Reporter mentions today that The 25th Hour is currently shooting in New York. Yesterday, Variety.com reported that director Brett Ratner is "preparing to wrap" Red Dragon (most recently reported filming location was in the Florida Keys). EN is the lead in both films so is EN currently on the set of Red Dragon or The 25th Hour or are one or both of them shooting scenes without his character? May 1st had been reported as the The 25th Hour start date months ago, but since the Variety production chart hasn't been updated in months (cast listings didn't include Hoffman or Dawson yet), I wasn't sure if filming had been pushed back due to Red Dragon filming. Also, I'm a bit confused about Tobey Maguire's role with the The 25th Hour. He was signed on to produce and star in the film early on, but then EN signed on for the lead role, so for a while I wasn't sure whether he was still producing. Both today's Variety.com and Hollywood Reporter have stories on a new deal of Maguire's, but while HR mentions Maguire just as the film's producer, V states that he is producing AND acting. So if he is in it, what role would he play since Barry Pepper and Philip Seymour Hoffman are supposed to play the two friends.

5/2/02 : The Hollywood Reporter announces that Barry Pepper is rounding out the trio of friends that include EN and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

4/30/02: From one Lecter to another: Variety reports that Brian Cox has been cast as EN's father in the film. Strangly enough, Cox originated the role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter in "Manhunter" the first adaptation of Thomas Harris's Red Dragon. EN will start filming 25th Hour after he completes working on the new adaptation of Red Dragon opposite Anthony Hopkins as Lecter.

3/28/02: Variety.com reports that Philip Seymour Hoffman is in final negotiations and Brittany Murphy and Rosario Dawson are in talks to join the cast of "The 25th Hour," although the earlier report below had indicated that Dawson had already signed on. Hoffman has a role in Red Dragon as sleazy tabloid reporter Freddy Lounds who has previously been a thorn in the side of FBI agent Will Graham (Norton). Thesps making time for 'Hour'

3/20/02 Casting news: Rosario Dawson (see her IMDB profile) has signed on, presumably for the role of Monty's girlfriend, Naturelle. This news came via an article on screenwriter Benioff, who just made his second million-dollar deal in the last six months.

Keyed Up

An interesting bit of trivia:

It turns out that singer Alicia Keys was considered the "odds-on fave" to join the 25th Hour until her recording schedule got in the way (Variety's Dish column 2/7/02).

I guess her role would have been Naturelle, Monty's (Edward Norton) girlfriend.

Norton, Lee clocking in for Disney's 'Hour'

Hollywood Reporter, January 30, 2002

Actor Edward Norton and director Spike Lee are teaming for the first time on a big-screen adaptation of David Benioff's novel "The 25th Hour," which the Walt Disney Co. is coming aboard to finance and distribute. Production begins in May in New York. The low-budget project will be produced by Nick Wechsler of Industry Entertainment, which manages Benioff, and Lee's longtime associate Jon Kilick. First-time author Benioff also adapted the screenplay, which depicts the last day of freedom for a young man before he begins serving a seven-year jail term for drug dealing. Prowling through the city until dawn with his two close male friends and his girlfriend, he is forced to re-examine his life and how he got himself into his predicament, which leads to a shocking, disturbing finale. Norton is repped by Endeavor. Lee and Benioff are repped by WMA. Benioff recently sold the supernatural thriller "Stay" to Regency Enterprises for more than $1 million (HR 10/19). Kilick's association with Lee began with 1989's "Do the Right Thing" and was renewed most recently with 2000's "Bamboozled." Wechsler and Industry most recently produced "15 Minutes." (Zorianna Kit)


Upcomingmovies.com: 25th Hour

Fetal Films: 25th Hour


Character Counts: Philip Seymour Hoffman. Newsweek online December 12, 2002

Thesps making time for 'Hour' Variety, March 28, 2002

The 25th Hour- the Novel

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