About The Production
There are some
marriages that are made in heaven - creative ones, that is - and no star and
director are more suited for each other than Jim Carrey and Tom Shadyac. Their
first collaboration, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, firmly established
Carrey as a star of the first magnitude, and Shadyac as a freshman director with
a promising career. The second time Carrey and Shadyac pooled their talents, the
result was Universal's Liar Liar, one of the biggest hits of 1997.
Thus, when Shadyac was
first presented with the high and mighty concept for Bruce Almighty, it
went to the top of his development heap at Shady Acres Entertainment, his
extremely busy production company. And Shadvac knew from the first who he wanted
to make it with. Only one actor could play a man suddenly endowed with the
powers of God, with all of the comedic mayhem and heartful drama that ensues. .
.Jim Carrey. The fundamental themes of Bruce Almighty were familiar
territory to the two friends, who had spent many hours debating the Big
Questions. "Jim is kind of a brother to me, notes Shadvac. "A little
brother in some ways, and a big brother in other ways.
"We have a great
friendship, and Bruce Almighty speaks to our concerns. What is this force
called God? What is this force doing in our lives? How do we relate to it?
Thematically, the film is ultimately a story about where true power comes
Shadyac and Carrey were
joined on their quest by Shady Acres partners and fellow producers Michael
Bostick and James D. Brubaker, who had collaborated with both on Liar Liar, and
were equally enthusiastic about the notion of bringing the story to cinematic
life. "Tom so personally responded to its themes," says Bostick,
"and based on his track record, it represented a project that's so far in
the Tom Shadyac wheelhouse. It's a star-driven, high-concept comedy that
ultimately has a message about the human condition, which I think is a strand
which runs through all his work."
Adds Jim Brtibaker,
"Tom's movies, whether comedies or dramas, are a little bit personal, a
little bit spiritual and always about opening the heart."
Bostick also notes that
"both Tom and Jim were coming off dramas and keenly interested in getting
back into the comedy genre. Jim not only signed on as the star of Bruce
Almighty, but also as a producer, and he became intimately involved in the
development of the script and then, creatively, every day on set."
As they kicked off
pre-production, Shadyac, Bostick and Brubaker began collecting a top-tier team
of behind-the-scenes artists, most of them returning to the fold after having
worked with the director and/or the producers on previous projects; this
stalwart group included Oscar-winning director of photography Dean Semler,
production designer Linda DeScenna, costume designer Judy Ruskin Howell, film
editor Scott Hill, propmaster Brad Einhorn and many more to follow.
team arc those who can adjust as fast as Tom can," states Brubaker.
"You need that team together, because what you're looking for are people
who can reinforce, be positive and take on any challenge."
Enthuses Shadyac about
his team: "Dean Semler is a cinematographer who takes comedy seriously, but
also has an incredible sense of humor. He's a great paint
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