If you’ve been following along with Chris Pine’s movie career, the last few films in which he’s appeared (“Star Trek,” “This Means War,” “Unstoppable”) might lead you to believe that the man is only action/adventure-oriented. Not so, as demonstrated by his work in his latest film, “People Like Us,” which revolves around a man who is tasked with delivering a $150,000 inheritance to a sister (Elizabeth Banks) he has never met.
MTV News recently sat down with Pine to discuss the unique tone and subject matter addressed in the film, which is based on the real-life experiences of its writing team, Alex Kurtzman (who also served as its director), Bob Orci and Jody Lambert, and is not necessarily the type of movie that big studios are gunning to green-light.
“Everyone I’ve talked to at the studio level who makes these decisions, it seems like it’s become an even more bottom-line kind of industry, so movies like ’Paranormal Activity’ or something that’s made for $3 million and goes on to gross $200 million or the big tentpoles that have the big marketing machines behind it, those are the movies they have to make,” Pine said about studios feeling pressured to churn out surefire blockbusters. “It’s a real tribute to DreamWorks and to Steven Spielberg. First of all, Alex wrote a great script and as much as the business of show business can sometimes dominate at the end of the day, people in what we do, we love good stories, we are hungry for good stories,” he explained of the selling point of “People Like Us.” “I think if something like ’The Artist,’ a silent film in black-and-white with French actors can do well. I think it’s a great sign that in our times you can have both; you can have ’The Avengers’ and you can also have films like ours, which are smaller.”
Pine said what he hopes people will enjoy in watching “People Like Us” is the fact that it features realistic characters trying to solve realistic problems, in addition to its old-school dramedy vibe influenced by James L. Brooks and Cameron Crowe.
“Alex talks very much about his influences — Brooks, Cameron Crowe, obviously — we always talked about ’Ordinary People’ and ’Kramer vs. Kramer.’ What’s great about those films, there’s nothing hooking you other than hopefully a story about a family that you relate to because it looks very much like your own, so it doesn’t necessarily mean these people have to go a great many places,” he said. ” ’Kramer vs. Kramer’ is a great example. You get lost in the minutia of this world of a kid making waffles or was it pancakes? We’ll have to look that up. That’s the world Alex wanted to create. That was the joy, figuring out the everyday living of these characters.”
Check out everything we’ve got on “People Like Us.”
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