As December nears, some of the potential line-up for the 2008 Sundance Film Festival is beginning to become clear.
Paper Hearts – First up is a film that almost no one has heard about until now. The feature filmmaking debut of Nicholas Jasenovec, the film is an unconventional comedy which is being described as “part-documentary, part-scripted comedy” about Michael Cera’s real-life relationship with Charlyne Yi (Knocked Up). Not much else is known about the film, but indie insiders are already predicting that it will be this year’s Sundance break out hit ala Napoleon Dynamite. [THR]
Spread – David Mackenzie’s (Mister Foe) raunchy sex comedy about a serial womanizer and his jilted lover. Ashton Kutcher and Anne Heche star (Jennifer Jason Leigh was originally attached). Early word is that Heche has some sort of nude scene.
An Education – Italian For Beginners director Lone Scherfig’ helms the first screenplay by About a Boy/High Fidelity novelist Nick Hornby. Adapted from a memoir by Lynn Barber, published in literary magazine Granta, the film tells a coming-of-age story about a teenage girl in 1960s suburban London, who has her life turned inside out after she meets a 35-year-old sportscar-driving Brit. The film stars Emma Thompson, Rosamund Pike, Peter Sarsgaard, Dominic Cooper, Alfred Molina, Olivia Williams and Sally Hawkins.
The Greatest – Shana Feste’s feature directorial debut about a troubled teenage girl (Carey Mulligan) and a family that is trying to get over the loss of their son (Aaron Johnson). Film also stars Pierce Brosnan, Susan Sarandon, and Johnny Simmons.
Brooklyn’s Finest - Training Day director Antoine Fuqua’s cop tale about three unconnected Brooklyn cops who wind up at the same deadly location after enduring vastly different career paths. The film stars Don Cheadle, Richard Gere, Ethan Hawke, Wesley Snipes, Ellen Barkin, Jesse Williams and Lili Taylor.
I Love You Phillip Morris – Adapted from Steve McVicker’s 2003 novel, and based on a true story. Carrey plays Russell, a criminal who falls in love with his cell mate, Phillip Morris (Ewan McGregor). After Morris’ release from prison, Russell attempts a variety of bizarre prison escapes in hopes of reuniting with the love of his life. The movie was apparently pitched as “Catch Me if You Can meets Brokeback Mountain“. The screenplay was written by the team who did Bad Santa.
Adventureland – Greg Mottola’s dramedy about a recent college grad (Jesse Eisenberg) who is forced to take a job at a local amusement park for the summer.
500 Days of Summer – Marc Webb’s offbeat romantic comedy about a woman (Zooey Deschanel) who doesn’t believe true love exists, and the young man (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who falls for her.
Moon – An old school space sci-fi thriller starrint Sam Rockwell as aAstronaut that has been stranded in space for three years and begins to hear and see strange things.
Black Dynamite – Scott Sanders’ homage to the Blaxploitation films of the 1970′s.
Some Big May-bes (more of a wish list than anything else):
Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus – More likely to premiere at Cannes than Sundance, but you never know.
The Road – Based on the Book
The Time Traveler’s Wife – Based on the book
Jennifer’s Body – The Diablo Cody scripted horror movie starring Megan Fox. Could be a Midnight?
Coraline – The first stop-animated film shot in 3D. Adapted from the Neil Gaiman book.
Terrance Malick’s The Tree of Life – Sean Penn and Brad Pitt star in a story a family with three boys in the 1950s, and the eldest son witnesses the loss of innocence.
The Soloist - Robert Downey Jr plays a Los angeles Journalist who befriends a homesless Julliard trained musician (Jamie Foxx)
Young Americans – A Dramedy about an aimless college grad who pursues his dream girl at a wild Labor Day weekend party. Topher Grace, Anna Faris, Dan Fogler, Teresa Palmer, Michael Ian Black, and Michelle Trachtenberg.
The Marc Pease Experience - Former high school musical star, Marc Pease (Jason Schwartzman), finds himself still living in the past, eight years after graduating. Anna Kendrick and Ben Stiller co-star.
Have any other suggestions of films that might be at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival? Comment below!