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Some first look images are interesting because they finally reveal how an actor might look in a long-awaited role. Others are great simply because they remind us that a worthy film is in motion. These new images showing Emma Roberts, Aasif Mandvi and Jeremy Davies in It’s Kind of a Funny Story are in the latter camp. They join the first look we had at Zach Galifianakis last week, and remind me that this is a film worth looking out for. Read More »

It's Kind of a Funny Story

The first photo of Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover) and Keir Gilchrist (United States of Tara) in Half Nelson writer/directors Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck‘s new film It’s Kind of a Funny Story has been sent to us by /Film reader Matt S.

The comedy-drama has been adapted from Ned Vizzini’s 2006 novel of the same name; “16-year-old Craig (Gilchrist), stressed out from the demands of being a teenager, checks himself into a mental health clinic. There he learns that the youth ward is closed – and finds himself stuck in the adult ward. One of the patients, Bobby (Galifianakis), soon becomes both Craig’s mentor and protégé. Craig is also quickly drawn to another 16-year-old, Noelle (Emma Roberts). With a minimum five days’ stay imposed on him, Craig is sustained by friendships on both the inside and the outside as he learns more about life, love, and the pressures of growing up. Academy Award nominee Viola Davis (Doubt) plays Dr. Minerva, the adult ward’s staff psychiatrist; Zoe Kravitz (The Brave One) portrays Nia, Craig’s longtime crush; Aasif Mandvi (The Proposal) is cast as Dr. Mahmoud, a hospital psychiatrist; and Lauren Graham (Parenthood) and Jim Gaffigan (of Focus’ Away We Go) play Craig’s parents, Lynn and George.

Check out the photo, after the jump.

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It's Kind of a Funny Story

Half Nelson writer/directors Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck‘s new film It’s Kind of a Funny Story begins production in New York City this week.

Keir Gilchrist, who stars as the title character’s son on the hit television series United States of Tara, has the film’s lead role. Costarring are Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover), Emma Roberts (of the upcoming Valentine’s Day), Academy Award nominee Viola Davis (Doubt), Zoe Kravitz (The Brave One), Aasif Mandvi (The Proposal), Lauren Graham (of this winter’s NBC series Parenthood), and Jim Gaffigan (of Focus’ Away We Go).

Focus Features sent out a press release to announce the start of production, which can be read after the jump.
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Focus Features Announces 2010 Release Dates

Eagle in the ninth

Focus Features today announced their 2010 release slate. Highlights include:

  • March 12th 2010: The Squid and the Whale writer/director Noah Baumbach‘s Greenberg which stars Ben Stiller
  • April 16th 2010: Thomas BalmèsBabies, a documentary film which simultaneously follows four babies around the world – from birth to first steps.
  • Wednesday, September 1st 2010: Anton Corbijn‘s The American starring George Clooney as a retiring assassin
  • Third Quarter 2010: Kevin Macdonald‘s Roman epic adventure The Eagle of the Ninth
  • November 2010: Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck‘s (Half Nelson, Sugar) dramedy adaptation of Ned Vizzini‘s 2006 novel It’s Kind of a Funny Story
  • TBA 2010 (we assume in December for Award Season): Sofia Coppola‘s Somewhere starring Stephen Dorff and Elle Fanning

After the jump you can read the full press release, which includes detailed plot synopsis for all of these films.

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Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden are the sort of creative team you can’t help but love. The duo have given us such recent gems as Half Nelson and Sugar, so you can bet I’ve been keeping a close eye on their next project, a dramedy entitled It’s Kind of a Funny Story, based on the novel of the same name. We’ve previously reported  the announcement of the project, as well as Zach Galifianakis’s involvement, and now we have the full cast list to share.

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It’s Kind of a Funny Story is the title of an upcoming Zach Galifianakis dramedy from the writer/director team behind Half Nelson and their rising gem Sugar. And in a way, the line also describes wild-man Nicolas Cage‘s reasoning for recently bailing on the The Green Hornet. These tidbits of casting news after the jump…

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Like Half Nelson and Sugar before it, It’s Kind of a Funny Story is to be directed by Ryan Fleck and produced by Anna Boden from a screenplay that they wrote together. We knew the picture was in the works some time ago but The Hollywood Reporter is today announcing that Focus Features will “finance, produce and distribute” it. Of course, with the label ‘indie’ not in any way being related to independence, the film will ultimately be considered an ‘indie’ film. People sure do like that idea.

The Hollywood report lets us know that the film was previously being developed at Paramount, who appear to have placed it in turnaround, and is adapted from Ned Vizzini‘s novel of the same name that was published by Miramax Books. Interestingly, the novel is described as being for “young adults,” suggesting a possible shift of target for Fleck and Boden from the very adult-oriented material of their first two films. And yes, I know one of the two key protagonists in Half Nelson was a kid. It doesn’t change a thing. That film was aimed clearly aimed at an adult audience.

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