Owen Wilson in Talks for Paul Thomas Anderson’s INHERENT VICE

     May 9, 2013


Owen Wilson is reportedly in negotiations for a role in Paul Thomas Anderson’s (The Master) upcoming crime thriller Inherent Vice, based on the novel by Thomas Pynchon.  Although Wilson’s representative declined to comment, it is believed he will play a lead role opposite the exceptional Joaquin Phoenix.  Set in 1970 Los Angeles, Inherent Vice tells the Lebowski-esque story of pot-smoking private investigator Larry “Doc” Sportello (Phoenix) as he investigates the alleged kidnapping of a girl he used to date.  The cast may also include Benicio del Toro, playing a lawyer who helps the protagonist.  Hit the jump for more details.

According to The Wrap, Charlize Theron is rumored for the female lead.  Warner Bros. will finance and distribute the film, as opposed to Megan Ellison, who funded Anderson’s previous work The Master with her company Annapurna Pictures.  Anderson will produce the film via his production company Ghoulardi Film Co., along with JoAnne Sellar and Daniel Lupi.  Vice looks to begin production later this month.

I must say I have mixed feelings about Wilson starring in an Anderson film, even if I like the fact that the director is branching out from his usual brilliant crew, which includes the likes of Philip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, and Philip Baker Hall.  Although this film will be comedic, and Wilson generally shines in comedy, I wonder if he is dynamic enough for an Anderson film.  Quirky director Wes Anderson has done a good job of drawing surprising depth from Wilson, but I still have my doubts.  However, Anderson proved many doubters wrong by drawing out exceptional depth in Adam Sandler in Punch Drunk Love.  Additionally, I initially was unsure of his casting of Phoenix until I saw the first trailer for The Master, which blew me away.  Consequently, I will choose to trust the consummate director and say that any P.T. Anderson news is good news.

Here’s the book synopsis:

It’s been awhile since Doc Sportello has seen his ex-girlfriend.  Suddenly out of nowhere she shows up with a story about a plot to kidnap a billionaire land developer whom she just happens to be in love with. Easy for her to say.  It’s the tail end of the psychedelic sixties in L.A., and Doc knows that “love” is another of those words going around at the moment, like “trip” or “groovy,” except that this one usually leads to trouble. Despite which he soon finds himself drawn into a bizarre tangle of motives and passions whose cast of characters includes surfers, hustlers, dopers and rockers, a murderous loan shark, a tenor sax player working undercover, an ex-con with a swastika tattoo and a fondness for Ethel Merman, and a mysterious entity known as the Golden Fang, which may only be a tax dodge set up by some dentists. [Book Browse]

inherent vice book cover

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  • http://modage.tumblr.com/ modage

    Except for Hoffman, PTA hasn’t worked with anyone in his “usual crew” you mentioned in 14 years.

    • conradthegreat

      Remember, PTA makes films at a glacial pace…. Not James Cameron glacial, but you get it.

  • gchase

    Fair enough. You’re right, Cory. He really did branch out for “There Will Be Blood” and “Punch Drunk Love” and “The Master.” I guess that makes half of his film career. I just see them as prominent since most of them were in his first 3 films. And Hoffman especially is a favorite of his, but I concede your point.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jason-Richards/100002224412328 Jason Richards

    I’m not really an avid PTA fan. He’s hit and miss for me. Hard eight meh, Boogie Nights really good. Magnolia meh, Punch Drunk love good. There will be blood is a modern masterpiece, but the master was not that good in my opinion although the performances and cinematography were top notch. Hopefully this one is good.

    • Chris

      Hard Eight was a great character study/crime drama and had exceptional performances by Baker Hall, Reilly, Paltrow and Jackson (plus a great cameo by PSH) and is actually one of my favourites, along with There Will Be Blood and The Master.

  • Bloost

    PTA is the director Christopher Nolan could’ve been if he didn’t turn into the new George Lucas.

    • Keir Sittloh

      Even if you don’t like Nolan, you can’t possibly think he compares can you?

      • Bloost

        Talia’s death scene was as laughable as Darth Vader’s NO!

    • Jack

      I agree %100

      • shadypotential

        then you’re an idiot

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jason-Richards/100002224412328 Jason Richards

      What does Nolan have to do with this thread? Do you just troll for the the fuck of it?

  • Sam

    I understand a doubt filled reaction to hearing Owen Wilson in a PTA film but when has there ever been a bad performance in one of PTA’s films? It’s literally insane how he can draw these performances from all range of actors. So am I worried… not in the slightest. Owen Wilson in my opinion is a funny guy and is a great choice for Inherent Vice.

  • -

    I’m not sure how I feel about this. I liked Owen Wilson in Midnight in Paris, but in general I think he’s kind of boring.
    Then again, if PTA can get a good performance out of Adam Sandler, I guess this could work out.

  • Dede

    Don’t be nerd about this PTA knows what he’s doing. Also whens the last time he worked with Juillane moore, philip baker hall or John C Reilly?

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