Focus Features has released the red-band trailer for Jason Bateman‘s directorial debut, Bad Words. The film stars Bateman as the Guy Trilby, a 40-year-old who exploits a loophole to compete in a national spelling bee competition. Guy has a larger motive than just winning, but his mean-spirited nature allows him to berate and humiliate kids along the way. It’s really funny. When I saw the film at TIFF, I was worried the trailer would give away too many of the jokes, and this red-band trailer does drop a few of the good ones (especially an insult near the end), but it manages to keep most of them a secret by focusing on Guy’s relationship with his competitor Chaitanya (Rohan Chand).
Hit the jump to check out the trailer, and click here for Steve’s interview with Bateman at TIFF. The film also stars Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Ben Falcone, and Philip Baker Hall. Bad Words opens March 21, 2014.
Focus Features has slated Jason Bateman’s directorial debut Bad Words for a limited release on March 21, 2014, followed by a wide expansion on March 28th where it will square off against the futuristic thriller Divergent, the sequel Muppets Most Wanted, and Joe Carnahan’s action comedy Stretch. Bateman stars in the very R-rated comedy as a man who, through a loophole, enters a nationwide 8th grade spelling bee and proceeds to the finals—much to the dismay of the parents and organizers. I caught the film at TIFF and it’s really funny, but Bateman does not hold back when it comes to his character saying terrible, terrible things to his fellow child contestants. Read Matt’s review here and watch Steve’s interviews with Bateman here and co-star Kathryn Hahn here.
Additionally, Sony has shifted the release date of director Will Gluck’s (Easy A) musical remake Annie from December 25, 2014 to December 19th. The Quvenzhané Wallis-fronted pic will now square off against the third and final (?) entry in Peter Jackson’s trilogy, The Hobbit: There and Back Again.
As I’ve said in previous reviews, I’m a Jason Bateman fan. I think his critics are wrong when they say he only plays the straight man role. That’s the role he’s best known for, and even then “straight man” is a bit of a misnomer. Instead, Bateman’s adept at playing an outwardly nice guy with a not-very-nice guy deep down. Sometimes the inner guy is moderately deceptive like Arrested Development, sometimes he’s aggressive like Horrible Bosses, and in the case of Bateman’s directorial debut, Bad Words, he’s one of the meanest motherfuckers around. Bateman’s secret weapon is that he still looks and talks like a nice guy, and because he pushes this new character to a level of remarkable despicability, Bad Words is a damn funny flick that plays it safe by the script, but hits hard with the jokes.
One of my favorite films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is Jason Bateman‘s directorial debut Bad Words. Andrew Dodge’s awesome script centers on a high-school drop-out (Bateman) who uses a loophole to compete in an 8th grade spelling bee, enraging teachers and parents alike, but befriending an awkward young contestant along the way. And while the film could easily be a family friendly, PG movie that plays it safe, I’m happy to report Bateman has crafted a wholly R-rated movie that’s loaded with inappropriate dialogue and hysterical situations. It also explains why Focus Features quickly snapped it up during an all night bidding war following the world premiere. Bad Words also stars Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Ben Falcone, Philip Baker Hall and Rohan Chand.
The day after the premiere I got to sit down with Hahn for an extended video interview. She talked about what the last few years have been like, premiering at TIFF, making Bad Words, working with Nick Offerman in We’re the Millers, her experience on Ben Stiller‘s The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, working with Peter Bogdanovich on Squirrels to the Nuts and its great cameos, her Showtime pilot Trending Down with Philip Seymour Hoffman, and so much more. Hit the jump to watch.
One of my favorite films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is Jason Bateman‘s directorial debut Bad Words. Andrew Dodge’s awesome script centers on a high-school drop-out (Bateman) who uses a loophole to compete in an 8th grade spelling bee, enraging teachers and parents alike, but befriending an awkward young contestant along the way. And while the film could easily be a family friendly, PG movie that plays it safe, I’m happy to report Bateman has crafted a wholly R-rated movie that’s loaded with inappropriate dialogue and hysterical situations. It also explains why Focus Features quickly snapped it up during an all night bidding war following the world premiere. Bad Words also stars Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Ben Falcone, Philip Baker Hall and Rohan Chandz.
The day after the premiere I got to sit down with Bateman for an extended video interview. He talked about the warm reception for the film, landing distribution, marketing plans, the soundtrack (which is fantastic), working with child actor Rohan Chand, deleted scenes, and more. In addition, Bateman talked about the Horrible Bosses sequel, the audience perception of The Change-Up, and Shawn Levy‘s This Is Where I Leave You. Hit the jump to watch.
Following yesterday’s big acquisition of the crowd-favorite Can a Song Save Your Life? at the Toronto International Film Festival, we’ve got a few other acquisition stories to attend to:
- After an intense bidding war, Focus Features has acquired worldwide rights to Jason Bateman’s directorial debut Bad Words for a whopping $7 million. The spelling bee comedy earned strong marks after its TIFF debut and is slated for a 2014 release. Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, and Ben Falcone (Bridesmaids) also star.
- Director/star John Turturro’s Fading Gigolo has been picked up for worldwide rights by Millennium for $3 million, per Deadline. Turturro stars as a man who aspires to be a professional Don Juan, and ends up being pimped out by his friend played by Woody Allen.
- The relatively new company A24 has picked up the North American rights to director Steven Knight’s drama Locke, starring Tom Hardy as a man struggling to save his personal and professional life over the course of a car ride.
Hit the jump to read the press releases regarding Bad Words and Locke, and click here to catch up on all of our TIFF 2013 coverage thus far.
This morning, the Toronto International Film Festival announced its terrific line-up for their Galas and Special Presentation programs. Among the films with new images and synopses are:
- Life of Crime (Directed by Daniel Schechter) Starring John Hawkes, Yasiin Bey (a.k.a Mos Def), Jennifer Aniston, Tim Robbins, Isla Fisher, Will Forte, and Mark Boone Jr.
- The Railway Man (Directed by Jonathan Teplitzky) Starring Colin Firth, Jeremy Irvine, and Nicole Kidman.
- Third Person (Directed by Paul Haggis) Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, Adrien Brody, James Franco, Olivia Wilde, Maria Bello, Kim Basinger, and Moran Atias.
- The Art of the Steal (Directed by Jonathan Sobol) Starring Jay Baruchel, Matt Dillon, Kurt Russell, Terence Stamp, Katheryn Winnick, Chris Diamantopoulos, Kenneth Welsh, and Jason Jones.
- Bad Words (Directed by Jason Bateman) Starring Jason Bateman, Allison Janney, Phillip Baker Hall, Kathryn Hahn, and Rohan Chand.
Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses. The 2013 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 5 – 15th.
The Toronto International Film Festival has announced part of its line-up for 2013. The festival will kick off with Bill Condon’s Julian Assange movie, The Fifth Estate, and close with Daniel Schecter’s Jackie Brown prequel, Life of Crime. In between, you have the premieres of Ron Howard’s Rush; Jason Reitman’s Labor Day starring Josh Brolin and Kate Winslet; Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave starring Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender; Richard Ayoade’s The Double starring Jesse Eisenberg; David Gordon Green’s Joe starring Nicolas Cage; Atom Egoyan’s West Memphis Three movie Devil’s Knot starring Colin Firth and Reese Witherspoon; the North American premiere of Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity, and many more. Even the Mike Meyer’s documentary Supermensch that we reported on yesterday will be on hand, so it looks like he’s already completed it. Unfortunately, I’m sure TIFF will front-load their schedule like they always do, so there will be plenty of tough choices, but Gravity and 12 Years a Slave are the must-sees that immediately jump to mind.
Hit the jump for a list of the Galas and Special Presentations. Please note that there are plenty of other categories that will be announced soon including the full Midnight Madness, Documentary, and Masters line-up so stay tuned. The 2013 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 5 – 15th.
Back in July, we reported that Jason Bateman (Arrested Development) was lining up the 2011 Black List comedy Bad Words as his directorial debut. We’re happy to say that the production has officially begun and the supporting cast has been significantly rounded out. In addition to Bateman in the lead, the indie comedy will feature Allison Janney (The Help), Kathryn Hahn (Our Idiot Brother), Ben Falcone (Bridesmaids), Philip Baker Hall (Argo), and Rohan Chandz (Jack and Jill). Andrew Dodge’s comedic script centers on a high-school drop-out (Bateman) who uses a loophole to compete in an 8th grade spelling bee, enraging teachers and parents alike, but befriending an awkward young contestant along the way. Hit the jump for much more on Bad Words.
Jason Bateman (Arrested Development) is in negotiations to direct the indie picture Bad Words for Darko Entertainment. The spelling bee comedy, from a script by Andrew Dodge (Tyro), made the 2011 Black List. Bateman would not only direct, but star in the picture as well. Bad Words centers on a bitter thirty-something man who uses a technicality in the rules to enter a national spelling competition for children. The picture follows the relationships he forms with a female reporter and a young Indian contestant, who he shows lighter side of life. Sources at Variety place Bateman in the director’s chair for the first time for a feature film. He previously directed episodes of television shows Arrested Development and Family Matters. Bateman can next be seen in new episodes of Arrested Development and is currently filming with Horrible Bosses director Seth Gordon for the comedy Identity Thief.
Each year, Hollywood releases “The Black List.” The list is a compilation of the “best” unproduced scripts making the rounds of Hollywood, as voted on by hundreds of film executives. Past scripts that have made their way to the list include Diablo Cody’s Juno and Aaron Sorkin‘s The Social Network. This year, topping the list is Graham Moore’s script for the Alan Turing biopic The Imitation Game. Turning was a mathematician and codebreaker during World War II who was criminally prosecuted for his homosexuality, after which he elected chemical castration over prison, and eventually ended his own life.
The Imitation Game has been in the works for a while, and last we heard Warner Bros. was keen on getting Harry Potter director David Yates to take the helm. Leonardo DiCaprio is also said to have taken a liking to the role of Turing. Also appearing on the list is Matt Damon’s planned directorial debut Father Daughter Time and Chewie, which tells the behind-the-scenes story of Star Wars from the perspective of Peter Mayhew. Hit the jump to peruse the entire list, which includes two Pinocchio projects, a movie about catching a screening of Jurassic Park, and zombies!