We’ve got a few acquisition stories regarding films screening at the Toronton Film Festival to share this afternoon. Briefly:
- Lionsgate has acquired U.S. distribution rights to the comedy Imogene, which stars Kristen Wiig, Annette Bening, Matt Dillon and Darren Criss.
- Lionsgate also picked up the sex addict dramedy Thanks for Sharing starring Mark Ruffalo, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Tim Robbins, directed by The Kids Are All Right scribe Stuart Blumberg.
- Roadside Attractions has acquired the U.S. rights to Sarah Polley’s (Take This Waltz) much buzzed-about documentary Stories We Tell.
- IFC Films picked up director Neil Jordan’s (Interview with the Vampire) vampire drama Byzantium, starring Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan.
Hit the jump for more details.
The line-up for this year’s Toronto International Film Festival has been announced and it is a doozy. The festival will play host to some of the year’s biggest world premieres including Rian Johnson‘s Looper (which will be the festival’s opening night film), The Wachowskis and Tom Tykwer‘s Cloud Atlas, Ben Affleck‘s Argo, David O. Russell‘s The Silver Linings Playbook, Derek Cianfrance‘s The Place Beyond the Pines, Joss Whedon‘s Much Ado About Nothing, Noah Baumbach‘s Frances Ha, and Neil Jordan‘s Byzantium. Films making their International/North American debuts (which means that they’ll like show up at the Venice Film Festival first) include Terrence Malick‘s To the Wonder, Joe Wright‘s Anna Karenina, Robert Redford‘s The Company You Keep, and Billy Bob Thornton‘s Jayne Mansfield’s Car.
Hit the jump for the first wave of announced films. The 2012 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 6 – 16th.
The first images from the sex addict dramedy Thanks for Sharing have gone online. The film marks the directorial debut of The Kids Are All Right co-writer Stuart Blumberg and features an all-star cast in this story of three sex addicts struggling to function in normal society. Mark Ruffalo plays an addict who’s trying to strike up a relationship with a woman who has sworn off dating other addicts (Gwyneth Paltrow), Tim Robbins plays a man married to his high school sweetheart who actually becomes addicted to his 12-step recovery program, and Book of Mormon star Josh Gad plays a young man whose addiction is so bad that he hides a camera in his shoe in order to film up women’s skirts.
The film certainly looks much lighter than that other sex addict movie from last year, Shame, and I’m a big fan of the ensemble cast. Hopefully we see a trailer soon. The film also stars Joely Richardson, Patrick Fugit, and Alecia Moore aka Pink. [Update: Apparently these images were not approved for release and we've been asked to take them down. We'll have official stills from the film up once they're available.]
We have a couple quick casting stories to report. First up, Zach Gilford (Friday Night Lights) has joined Arnold Schwarzenegger comeback’s film The Last Stand. Directed by Jee-woon Kim (I Saw the Devil), The Last Stand “centers on a disgraced LAPD cop who is now the sheriff of a sleepy border town. When a drug kingpin is headed for Mexico with a hostage and entourage in tow, the sheriff is the only thing that stands between him and freedom across the border.” Deadline has no details on Gilford’s character but reports that shooting is just getting underway in Albuquerque. Gilford’s a solid actor who had a tendency to get overshadowed by his FNL co-stars, but he’s a quality addition to any cast.
The Last Stand is due out January 18, 2013. Hit the jump for casting news for Stuart Blumberg’s Thanks for Sharing.
The cast for screenwriter Stuart Blumberg’s directorial debut Thanks for Sharing just got a lot more blonde. Gwyneth Paltrow and Joely Richardson have joined the cast of the dramedy which also stars Mark Ruffalo and Tim Robbins. The story revolves around a group of friends who are brought together in their quest to overcome sex addiction and forge meaningful relationships. Variety reports that Paltrow will play a successful businesswoman who falls for Ruffalo’s character, while Richardson will take on the role of Robbins’ wife.
Blumberg is coming off an Oscar nomination for co-writing The Kids are All Right, and is also the scribe responsible for the charming The Girl Next Door and Edward Norton’s underrated directorial effort Keeping the Faith. The cast is intriguing given the subject matter, and Blumberg has a knack for keeping weighty material from becoming too heavy-handed, so I’m interested to see how this one turns out.
Tim Robbins will co-star with Mark Ruffalo in Thanks for Sharing, the directorial debut of The Kids Are All Right screenwriter Stuart Blumberg. Risky Business reports that Blumberg’s script “revolves around characters in a 12-step program for recovering sex addicts in New York City.” While Robbins earned an Oscar for his dramatic work, I’ve always found him to be delightful in comic roles even though Thanks for Sharing is being billed as a “dramedy”. Filming is slated to begin this fall.
Robbins and Ruffalo will both next be seen in superhero films. Robbins plays Senator Hammond, father of villain Hector Hammond (Peter Sarsgaard) in Green Lantern. Ruffalo is currently filming on The Avengers where he plays Bruce Banner/Hulk.
A couple of casting stories for you this morning. Viola Davis and Jeffrey Wright have joined the ever-growing cast of director Stephen Daldry’s (The Reader) adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer’s novel Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. We recently announced the addition of John Goodman to a cast that is toplined by Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks, with Jeopardy wiz-kid Thomas Horn set to star as nine-year-old Oskar Schnell. Daldry directs from a script by Eric Roth (Forrest Gump). The story follows Schnell on his quest to find the lock that belongs to a mysterious key that his father left behind when he perished in the 9/11 attacks. Featuring multiple narrators and heartbreak at every turn, the novel was a bestseller and the film adaptation is sure to be Oscar bait come February 2012.
Baz Bamigboye’s report (via The Playlist) doesn’t specify what roles Davis and Wright will take on, though it’s feasible to think that they could be portraying two of the many tenants of Manhattan that Schnell runs into on his year-long quest. Hit the jump to hear about Mark Ruffalo re-teaming with The Kids are All Right-scribe Stuart Blumberg for Thanks for Sharing.