Riding high on the wave that was his self-deprecating, actually funny tribute to Meryl Streep on Monday night, Robert De Niro is reportedly surging into Cannes' closing-night slot next month with his undistributed Hollywood satire What Just Happened? Directed by Barry Levinson, written by Art Linson and starring De Niro as a Linson-esque producer beset with divorce and a nightmarish film project, the movie's buzz fizzled after mixed reviews following its Sundance premiere. So what are the odds it'll seal a deal on the Croisette?
We'd say pretty good, despite the oppressive meta levels yielded by the film's movie-
within-a-movie that crashes and burns on Cannes' opening night. The irony! Anyhow, De Niro's new allies at Endeavor will be hustling along with the power brokers at Cinetic, which will face a price reduction after nearly four months on the market — unless it's picked up before then, which wouldn't be the most surprising development we ever heard. WJH's producers 2929 Entertainment (a/k/a Mark Cuban's writeoff) sold the cop flop We Own the Night last year at Cannes for eight figures; that kind of buy won't happen here. Either way, as cautiously optimistic fans of the De Niro restoration, we're enacting our own CAA defection and holding our breath as we hope for the best.