Director James Ponsoldt and Brie Larson Talk THE SPECTACULAR NOW, the 21 JUMP STREET Sequel, and Ponsoldt’s YA Adaptation PURE

     January 22, 2013


One of my favorite movies at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was director James Ponsoldt (Smashed) and writers Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber’s (500 Days of Summer) coming of age drama The Spectacular Now.   Led by fantastic lead performances from Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley, the film is about two High School seniors that are going in opposite directions.  Sutter Keely (Teller) is the life of the party and loves to drink, while Aimee Finicky (Woodley) is pretty, but shy and removed from the popular crowd.  When Sutter wakes up on Aimee’s lawn after being dumped by his girlfriend, what starts off as a rebound quickly turn into something more.  The film also stars Brie Larson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Kyle Chandler.

The day after the world premiere I sat down with Ponsoldt and Larson for an exclusive video interview.  We talked about being at Sundance, why they wanted to make the film, how things changed during production, how the characters looked and felt real, deleted scenes and more.  In addition, I asked Larson if she’s going to be in the 21 Jump Street sequel and Ponsoldt talked about why he wanted to write and direct the young adult adaptation of Pure.  He compared it to The Wizard of Oz and Pan’s Labyrinth and says he’s already started writing it.  Hit the jump for more.

spectacular-now-miles-teller-shailene-woodleyFinally, for more on The Spectacular Now, here is Matt’s glowing review and everything we’ve posted on the film.

James Ponsoldt and Brie Larson:

  • When did they first hear they got into Sundance.  Larson talks about why she wanted to be in the film
  • 1:45 – They talk about what the film is about and why they both wanted to make the film
  • 4:00 – We talk about how the characters looked and felt real.   Ponsoldt talks about the casting.  Larson talks about the look of her character
  • 6:35 – How much changed on set along the way
  • 7:45 – Deleted scenes talk
  • 8:20 – Is Larson going to be in the 21 Jump Street sequel
  • 9:25 – Ponsoldt talks about Pure and why he wanted to write/direct it.  Says he loves the strangeness of the book.  Compares it to Wizard of Oz and Pan’s Labyrinth.  Also says he’s already started writing it.


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