Clooney, Cody branch out at TIFF

Both take unexpected turns with their festival films

Diablo Cody and George Clooney didn't exactly start in the same place -- she began as a stripper, he was a regular on "The Facts of Life." But their career paths have led them both to Toronto, where they are on hand in the early days of this year's festival to promote new films.
And both of these film figures show how an abundance of career choices can be a blessing -- and also something a little more complicated.

In the wake of her breakout teen-pregnancy comedy "Juno," which made her an "It" writer, Cody has enjoyed a plethora of choices, landed atop a writing posse loosely known as the Fempire and scored herself an Oscar.

With "Jennifer's Body," the teen horror movie starring Megan Fox she is promoting in Toronto, Cody is moving into new terrain. And she just may stay on that terrain for a little while. "I would like to make another horror film, for sure," Cody told THR before Thursday night's screening. "That's definitely on the agenda."

Cody does manage to continue her trademark dialogue in "Body" -- phrases like "You're so jello, You're lime-green jello" pop up throughout -- though that didn't mean every cast member always understood them.

"There are days (on set) when I said 'What the fuck does that mean?'," Fox told the audience after the midnight premiere at the Ryerson Theater. And "I'd say to (director) Karyn (Kusama), 'What does that mean?' And she'd say, 'I don't know, but let's shoot it anyway'."

Clooney, meanwhile, said he doesn't really have a desire to move back to the action movies that defined the early part of his big screen career.

The actor turned out on Friday to promote military satire "The Men Who Stare at Goats," and will be back Saturday to flog his frequent-flyer dramedy "Up in the Air." They both fit the mold of the quirky passion projects he has embraced of late -- movies like "Burn After Reading" and "Leatherheads," the latter of which he also produced and directed.

"If you looked at the past few years, we (he and producing partner/"Goats" helmer Grant Heslov) haven't focused so much on the economics," he said at the "Goats" press conference. "We just want to make our money back so we can keep making them."
Clooney added, "They loved it when we said we wanted to do 'Good Night and Good Luck' in black and white. Next movie is silent. And no picture either."

Clooney hasn't entirely disavowed action. His next project, "A Very Private Gentleman" -- he stars and produces and Anton Corbin is directing -- is based on the Martin Booth novel and will find himself playing an assassin, hiding out in an idyllic Italian town.     

But Clooney said he still enjoyed working in a comedy like "Goats," because he particularly likes playing characters who are never as smooth or smart as they think they are.

"The idiot syndrome?" he said. "Those characters are funny to me. Nothing is as funny as someone who takes himself so seriously."

Borys Kit contributed to this report.
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