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Edward Norton Blasts the Media

I just love Edward Norton – have ever since I saw him play Aaron Stampler so well in Primal Fear. However, he has been involved in a few controversies while making films. First was during (and after) 1998’s American History X, for which he won an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

Back in July 1998, director Tony Kaye was pushing New Line Cinema to use his editing cut of the film. However, New Line Cinema was leaning towards the version of the film that used their own people, the film’s producer, Bill Carraro, and star Edward Norton. Kaye was so unhappy that he spent $100,000 of his own money on ads in trade publications such as Daily Variety to urge the studio to use his version. To bring his point home, Kaye showed up at a New Line Cinema meeting with a priest, a rabbi, and a Tibetan monk.

Kaye accused Norton of re-editing the film to give himself more screen time. Kay eventually was so unhappy, he tried to have his name removed completely from the film. He tried using the Alan Smithee pseudonym (a name used by directors who feel that they were not able to exercise creative control over a film and want to be disassociated with it), but that was not approved by the Directors Guild of America. When New Line Cinema asked him to pick a different name to be released with the film, he chose Humpty Dumpty. New Line Cinema said no to that as well and Kaye’s name was released as the director.

Now it seems that Edward Norton is involved in another studio battle, at least according to the media. He is accusing the media of reporting sensationalize stories about the rift between him and the studio behind his upcoming film The Incredible Hulk. Sources are reporting that Norton has had several outbursts against Marvel Entertainment about the final cut of the film. The rumors are Norton didn’t like the fact that Marvel wanted to make the film a series of action scenes.

Norton is saying that there weren’t any outbursts – that the disagreements were just part of the healthy moviemaking creative process. He said, “Every good movie gets forged through collaboration, and different ideas among people who are all committed and respect the validity of each other’s opinions is the heart of filmmaking. Regrettably, our healthy process, which is and should be a private matter, was misrepresented publicly as a ‘dispute’, seized on by people looking for a good story and has been distorted to such a degree that it risks distracting from the film itself, which Marvel, Universal and I refuse to let happen.”

It looks as if this time, the director is backing Norton’s view. Louis Leterrier said, “Everyone was exhausted; it was like a little burst. (Then it) became public, (which) kept Edward and Marvel from talking to each other. (The purported feud) was nothing and then it became something big.”

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About Libby Pelham

I have always loved to write and Families.com gives me the opportunity to share my passion for writing with others. I work full-time as a web developer at UTHSC and most of my other time is spent with my son (born 2004). I love everything pop culture, but also enjoy writing about green living (it has opened my eyes to many things!) and health (got to worry about that as you get older!).