David Foster Wallace biopic

David Foster Wallace fans aren’t the only ones harboring doubts about James Ponsoldt‘s upcoming biopic The End of the Tour. As it turns out, the late writer’s family is none too thrilled about the project, either.

In a new statement, the David Foster Wallace Literary Trust stressed that they “neither endorse nor support” the project, which is based on journalist David Lipsky‘s notes from a never-published story. What’s more, the Trust plans to “review its legal options,” potentially blocking distribution of the film.

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Jason Segel David Foster Wallace

Much as we love Jason Segel, he seemed like an, um, unexpected choice when he was cast as late author David Foster Wallace in James Ponsoldt‘s The End of the Tour. But now that shooting is underway, we have a much better idea of what Segel will look like in character… and the jury’s still out, I’d say.

The film stars Jesse Eisenberg as a Rolling Stone writer who goes on a road trip with Wallace. Ron Livingston has also just boarded the cast, in a supporting role. See Segel as Wallace and learn more about Livingston’s part after the jump.

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The Spectacular Now at Sundance

In an age when the phrase “teen drama” suggests hardscrabble dystopias or lovelorn werewolves, what’s extraordinary about The Spectacular Now is how ordinary it is. The leads are two kids that could be from any town in America, and their romance is neither epic nor star-crossed. Stories like this one surely play out dozens of times a day all over the world.

But despite that ordinariness, or more likely because of it, The Spectacular Now is also one of the best teen dramas of recent years. Under the direction of James Ponsoldt (Smashed), The Spectacular Now is a pitch-perfect depiction of adolescence, warm and funny and sad without ever veering into forced sentimentality.

It’s a tough balance to pull off, and during a recent press stop in New York I got the opportunity to ask him how he managed to get it right. We also talked about why the kids in The Spectacular Now drink so much, how he took advantage of Kyle Chandler‘s Coach Taylor image, and which Arrested Development star he’d love to work with. Hit the jump to read the full interview. (Some spoilers for The Spectacular Now follow.)

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David Foster Wallace

I’m as big a fan of actor Jason Segel and writer David Foster Wallace as anyone in this world. But are they two great tastes that taste great together, as the Reese’s slogan goes, or are they better kept separate? We’ll find out when James Ponsoldt‘s The End of the Tour gets underway.

Segel is attached to play the Infinite Jest author in the fact-based project, which also stars Jesse Eisenberg as the journalist writing an article about him. Get plot details and more after the jump.

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US-Secretary-of-State-Hillary-Clinton

Briefly: Lionsgate may be the studio to make a Hillary Clinton film. James Ponsoldt could direct as his follow-up to The Spectacular Now. The script, called Rodham, was written by Young Il Kim, and ended up on the Black List of popular unproduced screenplays in 2012.

Deadline reports that the script “covers Hillary when she was a hotshot young lawyer in D.C. and was torn between flourishing in Capitol Hill or going back to Arkansas to rekindle a relationship with her ex-boyfriend, a law teacher named Bill Clinton, who didn’t want to leave home.”

This isn’t the first recent effort to make a Hillary Clinton biopic; NBC and CNN each had it’s own plan to make either a mini-series or documentary about her, but both were blocked due to press from both sides of the political aisle, and reluctance of potential sources to participate. The Republican National Committee reportedly also argued that creating such films would represent unusual bias on the part of NBC and CNN.

There’s no cast in talks for this project yet.

The Spectacular Now

As a thank you to all our glorious /Film readers, we’re offering free tickets to see James Ponsoldt‘s lovely, impressive coming of age story The Spectacular Now in a city near you. The film stars Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley and opens August 2 in New York and Los Angeles, and nationwide August 23.

We have tickets in twelve cities from coast to coast so click below and see if your town is included. (Here’s a hint, New York and Los Angeles aren’t on there.) Read More »

The Spectacular Now

In James Ponsoldt‘s last film, Smashed, binge-drinking helped tear two married people apart. In his new one, The Spectacular Now, it brings two very different teens together, albeit in an unexpected way.

Miles Teller stars as popular, hard-partying Sutter, who drinks himself to oblivion one night after getting dumped by his girlfriend. He wakes up on the lawn of a classmate, sweet sci-fi geek Aimee (Shailene Woodley). Despite their differences, the two find themselves inexorably drawn together.

That setup may not sound like much of anything special, but the rave reviews out of Sundance indicate that Ponsoldt makes the most of it. Check out the first trailer and poster after the jump.

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Carey Mulligan

Carey Mulligan is unmistakably British, but her recent roles have brought her more and more frequently to this side of the Atlantic. Her most recent role saw her playing one of American literature’s most iconic dream girls, and her next release puts her in the middle of the ’60s folk scene in New York City.

Now Mulligan’s looking likely to portray another famous American figure: politician Hillary Clinton. Though she’s just one of several actresses in contention for the James Ponsoldt-directed biopic Rodham, a new report indicates that she’s currently the frontrunner for the part. Hit the jump for more details.

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