Last we discussed Stephen Daldry’s adaptation of Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, it was a highly speculative report that linked Sandra Bullock to the project after she was seen leaving a meeting with Daldry clutching an unidentifiable script. Turns out the heresay was spot on: Thompson on Hollywood reports that Paramount has officially greenlighted the project, with Bullock and Tom Hanks(!) on board. A team of Bullock (a newly minted Oscar winner) and Daldry (nominated thrice) is already plenty impressive, but Hanks’ presence takes things to a whole different level. Targeting a January start, Incredibly Close appears to be next in line for Hanks following production on Larry Crowne, a film he’s also directing.
Eric Roth’s script — said to feature multiple narrators and time frames — revolves around Oskar Schell, a nine-year-old “inventor, Francophile, tambourine player, Shakespearean actor, jeweler, pacifist… [whose] mission is to find the lock that fits a mysterious key belonging to his father, who died in the World Trade Center on 9/11.” The casting department is currently on the lookout for a young lead who can hold his own opposite Bullock and Hanks, who play the boy’s parents. Hit the jump for a full synopsis.
Here’s the synopsis for Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer:
Meet Oskar Schell, an inventor, Francophile, tambourine player, Shakespearean actor, jeweler, pacifist, correspondent with Stephen Hawking and Ringo Starr. He is nine years old. And he is on an urgent, secret search through the five boroughs of New York. His mission is to find the lock that fits a mysterious key belonging to his father, who died in the World Trade Center on 9/11.
An inspired innocent, Oskar is alternately endearing, exasperating, and hilarious as he careens from Central Park to Coney Island to Harlem on his search. Along the way he is always dreaming up inventions to keep those he loves safe from harm. What about a birdseed shirt to let you fly away? What if you could actually hear everyone’s heartbeat? His goal is hopeful, but the past speaks a loud warning in stories of those who’ve lost loved ones before. As Oskar roams New York, he encounters a motley assortment of humanity who are all survivors in their own way. He befriends a 103-year-old war reporter, a tour guide who never leaves the Empire State Building, and lovers enraptured or scorned. Ultimately, Oskar ends his journey where it began, at his father’s grave. But now he is accompanied by the silent stranger who has been renting the spare room of his grandmother’s apartment. They are there to dig up his father’s empty coffin. [Amazon]