Paul Thomas Anderson Sets Next Project

12/03/2009 Posted by Admin

By our guest blogger, Matt Jussim

Paul Thomas Anderson ("There Will Be Blood," "Boogie Nights") has lined up his next film at Universal Pictures, a period drama to star Philip Seymour Hoffman as a founder of a new religious organization in the 1950s, reports to Variety.

According to Variety: "Hoffman plays "the Master," as in "master of ceremonies," a charismatic intellectual who hatches a faith-based organization that begins to catch on in America in 1952. The story will focus on the relationship between the Master and Freddie, a 20-something drifter who becomes the leader's lieutenant. As the faith begins to gain a fervent following, Freddie finds himself questioning the belief system he has embraced, and his mentor."

Variety also says that: "The drama does not so much scrutinize self-started churches like Scientology or the Mormons, as much as it explores the need to believe in a higher power, the choice of which one to embrace and the point at which a belief system graduates into a religion."

The $35 million project has not yet been green lit, Anderson has yet to deliver a finished script.

Whether green lit or not, that fact that Anderson is working on a new project is wonderful news for film addicts. Anderson has made some of the most unique and interesting films in the last twenty years including “Boogie Nights,” and “Magnolia.” His last film, “There Will Be Blood,” was a cinematic masterpiece and one of the most beautifully shot movies I’ve ever seen. Anderson proved on that film that he is one of the best directors in Hollywood today.

The idea for the story sounds like it is right up Anderson’s alley, and it is also extremely promising that he has Philip Seymour Hoffman cast in the film. The two have collaborated on four films together, including “Sydney,” “Boogie Nights,” “Magnolia,” and “Punch Drunk Love.” Hoffman, who won the Academy Award for Best Actor for “Capote,” is a great actor, no matter the project. He was even masterful in “Mission: Impossible III” while playing a villainous character with a penchant for sarcasm.

The teaming of Anderson and Hoffman is a pragmatic formula for the success of this film. No release date has been speculated, with the project still in its early stages, but keep an eye out for updates in the coming year.

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