Tag Archives: Bruce Dern

Bruce Dern Says Emmy Recognition Took Him By Surprise

Bruce Dern photo by Lacey Terrell

Bruce Dern, Emmy nominated for his guest-starring work on “Big Love,” tells us that the recognition took him completely by surprise. 

“I never had that much to do on the show,” explains the esteemed actor — who certainly made a lasting impact as the manipulative, nasty, sometimes downright frightening polygamist, Frank Harlow.

Bruce says he’ll be at the awards, though his work schedule couldn’t be much fuller.  He has Francis Ford Coppola’s upcoming “Twixt” gothic horror picture making a lot of noise.  In September, he reveals, and daughter Laura will begin production on the drama they’ve been planning to do together for awhile:  “Hart’s Location,” with Joe Dante directing the film and Laura’s mother (his ex-wife) Diane Ladd also cast.

“It’s a father-daughter story,” says Bruce.  “My character divorced her mother when she was three and went off to pursue life as a big-time photographer.”  He goes on to explain that when the characters eventually do reunite, she’s a grown woman just getting out of jail — and anxious to get her five-year-old son back.  She finds her father not the bad, dangerous person she’s been led to believe.  “I tell her I’ll take her to get her son back on one condition – that I drive.” 

They’ll shoot in Georgia.

Bruce also has an independent feature just about to start production in upstate New York, “Love Orchard” with Kristanna Lokken (“Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines”).  “Her father wrote the script.  It’s his story,” Bruce reports, and describes an incident in which a three-year-old girl was arrested by the immigration and naturalization services, though her parents were in the country legally, working in his orchard.

With five decades in his career at this point, Bruce keeps finding himself on the receiving end of accolades – including his star on the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame last fall, his Legend Award at the inaugural Gold Coast International Film Festival in June,  And – possibly – an Emmy.  “Is it sacrilegious to say it?  The nomination is the win in itself,” says Bruce.

No Slowing Down for Hollywood Walk of Famer Bruce Dern

Bruce Dern as Frank Harlow HBO photo

There’s no slowing down for Bruce Dern.

The septuagenarian actor is not only splitting his time between “Big Love” camera calls in the L.A. area and emoting in Francis Ford Coppola’s “Twixt Now and Sunset” horror flick that’s shooting on the filmmaker’s land in Napa, California. He also has several
independent features in the pipeline. Those include the 3D thriller “The Hole” and the Word Wrestling Entertainment-produced “Killing Karma” action flick he completed in New Orleans recently.

The WWE “is trying to find a new Rock,” notes Bruce, referring to Dwayne Johnson. “They made four $4.4 million movies in New Orleans. One has Ed Harris and Amy Madigan. Mine has Parker Posey and Michael Rapaport. The main guy is Paul Levesque, who’s married to Stephanie McMahon, the daughter of Vince and Linda McMahon,” notes Dern, referring to the professional wrestling magnates (turned politico, in her case) of the WWE, wherein Levesque is also known as Triple H.

Dern gives credit to his manager Alan Somers for his work surge. “He’s been fabulous. My agents at CAA are great, but it doesn’t hurt when you get older to have a manager to remind people that you’re still out there. You don’t want someone saying, ‘I saw Bruce Dern today,’ and someone else saying, ‘You did not. He’s been dead for years,'” he jokes off-handedly.

It’s been a memorable week for Dern — what with the unveiling of his star on the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame, along with those of his daughter Laura and his former wife Diane Ladd. The trio are situated near the intersection of Hollywood and Vine, at the entrance of the W Hotel. It is, he acknowledges, a dream come true.

‘Big Valley’ On Track for Louisiana Location

Jessica Lange

It’s ironic: the big-screen “The Big Valley” is all about the Southern Pacific Railroad tussling with ranchers in Calfornia’s San Joaquin Valley in the old west – but the picture’s being made in Baton Rouge, LA.  Chalk it up to Louisiana’s inviting incentives for movie shooting – and California’s lack of same. 

Jessica Lange is taking over the Barbara Stanwyk role of ranch matriarch Victoria Barkley in the feature, due to begin production next month.  Lee Majors (who played Heath in the 1960s TV series) is also aboard, along with Bruce Dern, Richard Dreyfuss, Lorraine Nicholson (as Audra), “True Blood’s” Stephen Moyer (as Jarrod), Jason Alan Smith (as Nick) and Travis Fimmel, the Aussie who starred alongside the late Patrick Swayze in “The Beast” (as Heath).

AMC is heavy into casting for its “Hell on Wheels” miniseries – which sounds as if it might prove a lure to fans of HBO’s dearly departed “Deadwood,” with lots of old West dirt, grit, spit, violence and cussin’.  The 1865 period tale of a former Confederate slave owner out to avenge the rape and murder of his wife by Union soldiers takes place against construction of the transcontinental railroad.  The title refers to a bordello frequented by railroad workers in Nebraska.  Parts from hookers to Cheyenne tribesmen are to be filled for the project that starts shooting in August.