Last month, we reported that in addition to Joaquin Phoenix signing on to star opposite Philip Seymour Hoffman in Paul Thomas Anderson’s untitled religious drama, actresses Madisen Beaty (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) Amy Adams, Lena Endre (2009′s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), and Laura Dern were also circling the project. Earlier this week, we reported that Dern was on board (along with Jesse Plemons and David Warshofsky) and now we’ve learned that Endre and Adams have also joined the flick. The Playlist reports that Endre’s role is currently unknown while Deadline is reporting that Adams will play the wife of Hoffman’s character, Lancaster Dodd.
The story is set in the 1950s and centers on Dodd, a World War II veteran, who starts a new religion after being haunted by the horrors of battle. He then takes in an alcoholic drifter (Phoenix) as his right-hand man. Earlier drafts of the script heavily implied that the movie was based on L. Ron Hubbard and the founding of the Church of Scientology, but that aspect may have been reduced in later drafts. I’m not familiar with Endre’s work, but I’m a huge fan of Adams and this cast continues to impress.
After looking rather dead last September, Paul Thomas Anderson’s untitled religious drama was resurrected this past February when producer Megan Ellison (True Grit) and her Annapurna Productions came on board to finance the picture. Deadline now reports that Joaquin Phoenix has been confirmed play Freddie Sutton, an alcoholic drifter who becomes right-hand man to Lancaster Dodd, a charismatic intellectual known as The Master (played by Philip Seymour Hoffman, who’s been attached to the film from the beginning). Earlier drafts of the story were overtly based on Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, but that has reportedly changed. According to Deadline, “[Anderson] has greatly overhauled the script and now, Hoffman stars as a man who returns after witnessing the horrors of WWII and tries to rediscover who he is in post-war America. He creates a belief system, something that catches on with other lost souls.”
Deadline is also reporting that Anderson is now considering actresses Madisen Beaty (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) Amy Adams, Lena Endre (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), and Laura Dern for roles in the film. Hit the jump for more details on this exciting production.