Director Curtis Hanson adaptation of Too Big To Fail, the bestselling financial crisis chronicle from New York Times reporter Andrew Ross Sorkin, premieres on HBO tonight, and if the finished film is half as thorough as the media's advance coverage of the project, audiences will have a new understanding of 2008's near-economic collapse by 11 p.m. this evening. Among the more memorable details of the production that have emerged in recent days
Andrew Ross Sorkin works for scale
The book's author tells Daily Intel's Jessica Pressler he pulled down about "scale...about $800 a day" for his one-line cameo as a reporter at a press conference. (He's the guy whose question begins "Mr. Secretary! Mr. Secretary!...") Other revelations from Ross Sorkin: the filmmakers did a "great job" with the project and avoided doing anything "overly crazy," William Hurt's performance as Henry Paulson is "brilliant," and while filming his cameo he "made some nice friends with some of the cast and some of the crew," including Topher Grace and Cynthia Nixon, who he got to eat lunch with.
William Hurt and Henry Paulson bonded over birding
If Hurt's performance is as strong as Ross Sorkin says, you can credit the actor's extensive preparation process. According to the Washington Post, Hurt and Paulson met multiple times before filming began, with Paulson even inviting Hurt "to vacation with him over three days on a coastal Georgia island." On the trip, writes the Post's Ned Martel, Wendy Paulson led the group "on a 5 a.m. kayak trip, and the actor noted that had he been late, the strong-willed spouse...would have left him behind." The real-life Paulson, meanwhile, "pointed out hawks, egrets and spoonbills, as well as snakes and alligators...[and] caught and released snapper in a creek." (Hurt's a birder too) Later, Paulson "regaled [Hurt] with natural-history insights over dinner in a rustic lodge," while Hurt "kept up his questioning about regulators and profiteers, divining what Paulson learned on the Dartmouth gridiron and in the political arena." Paulson was also the only subject given a draft of the script and invited to submit notes