It appears that director Jason Reitman will follow up 2009’s superlative Up in the Air with a script from his Juno PIC, Diablo Cody, entitled Youth Adult. To ensure that each corner of the film’s production is packed with Oscar recognition, Charlize Theron is set to star. The script revolves around a ghostwriter of young adult novels (Theron) who, in an effort to “reclaim her identity,” attempts to reconnect with an old high school flame who has long since moved on. If all goes according to plan, Mandate Pictures and production company would like to have Young Adult in front of cameras in New York by November 10th. More after the jump:
When I saw the Deadline headline tout a “Juno Reteam,” I expected it was a bit of a tease. After all, Reitman was credited as producer for the Cody-scripted Jennifer’s Body — I figured he would again be involved in a producerial capacity. But nope. The report makes it clear that Reitman is directing and, unless he can pull an Eastwood and squeeze in a project prior to November, this will be his next film. The wording never specifically identifies Cody as the screenwriter (only as producer), but the source of Youth Adult has long been confirmed to be Cody’s pen. The Playlist has a great script review, where they provide a fuller synopsis:
The film centers on an attractive, but single — and misguided and lost — mid-thirties young adult novel writer living in Minneapolis. Divorced, but not entirely unhappy, this woman’s life is one day radically transformed when she receives a birth announcement from an old, still-idealized ex-boyfriend, triggering something deep inside her. Shook up from the announcement, the insecure and neurotic woman concocts an ill-conceived plan to go visit the small town where she grew up and where her ex-bf still lives with his new wife and child.
It sounds dark, and the depiction of the adult relationship appears to share a thematic ilk with Reitman’s Up in the Air. I think Cody’s adaptation of the Sweet Valley High books could be a peculiar brand of fun, but it’s likely for the best that Youth Adult will beat it to the theatrical punch.
Last we checked, Reitman claimed his next project would be an adaptation of Joyce Maynard’s Labor Day. To be fair, Deadline hedges its bets with the phrase “if all works out,” so that may yet be the case.
I’m happy to see Cody’s work back in the hands of Reitman, and mostly content (to a lesser extent) that Reitman is returning to the Cody well. But I’m curious to see how much residual Juno backlash will factor into public opinion. If you a strong opinion either way, I’d love to hear it in the comments.