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The Italian Job in our magazines

THE MOVIE: The Italian Job

THE STARS:
Mark Wahlberg • Charlize Theron • Edward Norton • Donald Sutherland
DIRECTOR: F Gary Gray

The Italian Job THE CONCEPT:
Remake of the 1969 classic, about a group of thieves who, when they are double-crossed, plan a heist to get even, which includes tapping into the Los Angeles traffic control system and escaping in three mini-cars.

U.S. RELEASE: May 30 2003, Nationwide
• Rated: PG-13

THE COMMENTS:

MARK WAHLBERG (Charlie Croker):
“This certainly isn’t a remake, this has the spirit of the original, obviously the title and the cars, but it’s its own movie. It has a life of its own.”

F. GARY GRAY:
“The biggest draw for me when I read the script was the ability to pull together a cast like this. I’ve known Mark for a few years, and I thought this would be perfect for him. And when you have a role like Stella Bridger, who is a tough safe-cracker, you can’t just hire any model or actress from Hollywood, because it just wouldn’t fly. I thought Charlize was perfect for the role, because she’s not only beautiful but down-to-earth.”

CHARLIZE THERON (Stella Bridger):
“I’m a huge fan of everyone in the film – including the MINIs. This is a wonderful character driven piece, and the way the cars are worked into the plot, they’re just as much a part of the cast as any one of us.”

WAHLBERG:
“I grew up admiring Donald Sutherland, and the fact that he wanted to do this movie was just amazing to me. You think that he’s this really serious guy, and he’s the complete opposite. Donald is just Don. He was so giving as an actor too. He’s really a team player. I think the guy is a genius and a legend.”

DONALD SUTHERLAND (John Bridger):
“In this movie, I had to create a template that would vitally exist in the memories of the characters, and therefore the memories of the audience. That’s hard. Mark just made it all possible. He was so available, generous, good and talented, he just was wonderful. And I think we succeeded.”

GRAY:
“The first thing I did in rehearsals was to tell the cast to drop their scripts because we were going to pull off a heist. They said, ‘What?’ I said, ‘You guys are going to play thieves, you have to perfect it.’ I think they were game for it and really excited. They pulled together this plan, and I can’t go into a lot of detail, but they ended up breaking into the studio and stealing a few things, and escaping without being caught. It was harmless because I sent my poor assistant back to return all the things they stole; the costumes, the props, the dailies from people’s offices. I did that to establish a bond and a trust between them that you need when you’re shooting a movie like this.”

WALHBERG:
“I get motion sickness pretty easily, especially in a stick-shift car with a psycho driver like Charlize Theron. She wants to be Rambo or something – she’s a wild woman! I loved driving and doing my own thing, but I’m not a stunt guy with something to prove, I’d rather have my stuntman in there.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

Visit the official The Italian Job site
Images above © Paramount Pictures
Feature © 2003 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #632, Summer 2003 cover

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