It’s been a bit of a long road for Paul Thomas Anderson‘s The Master. The project was pretty much dead until Megan Ellison and her Annapurna Pictures resurrected the film and provided the financing (thanks for that, Ms. Ellison!). In December, we heard that the film was likely to be released at near the end of the year. PTA fan site Cigarettes and Red Vines contacted Ellison about the release date, and she responded:
@cigsandredvines I know you guys are waiting on a release date for ‘the Master’, and it’s still a bit early, but I’d keep my eyes on October
Hit the jump for more.
For those unfamiliar with the movie, The Master (still a tentative title) centers on a man (Philip Seymour Hoffman) who’s so shaken by the horrors he witnessed in World War II that he decides to create a new religion. The film, shot in 65mm and scored by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood (There Will Be Blood), also stars Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Laura Dern, Jesse Plemons, and David Warshovsky. In an earlier draft of the script, Hoffman’s character was clearly based on Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, but that basis may have been scaled back in the final film.
An October release date firmly sets the movie in the festival game, and I would be shocked if the film didn’t open at a major fall festival in order to start building buzz. But which festival? The likely contenders are Venice, Toronto, and possibly Fantastic Fest. Fantastic Fest is the most genre-oriented of the three, but that’s where There Will Be Blood made its world premiere. No matter where it lands, a release in October (or really any fall release date) could put the film in the awards game, and distributor The Weinstein Company loves them some awards. Personally, I’m just glad that we’ll get this sucker in 2012, especially since we came so close to never getting it at all.