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With Mark Ruffalo moonlighting as a superhero these days, it’s easy to forget he’s one of the best actors currently working. Infinitely Polar Bear, written and directed by newcomer Maya Forbes, not only serves as a reminder of Ruffalo’s chops, it’s arguably his finest performance to date. He plays Cameron, a bipolar father of two, who is forced to solely care for the kids when his estranged wife Maggie (Zoe Saldana) goes to graduate school hoping to improve the family’s financial situation.

So you’ve got a bipolar man, barely able to keep himself together, forced to take care of two young girls when their African-American mom goes away hoping to get a white-collar job… in 1978 Boston. Yes, Infinitely Polar Bear is weighty with issues of race, economics, and gender, but Forbes deals with them carefully and thoughtfully in a hilarious, heartwarming film. Read More »

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Zoe Saldana is in talks to join Mark Ruffalo in Infinitely Polar Bear, the directorial debut of screenwriter Maya Forbes. The drama follows a bipolar man (Ruffalo) and his long-suffering wife (Saldana). When the husband goes off his meds, he finds his life deteriorating along with his psychological condition. As he loses his job and his mind, his wife returns to work and then eventually moves out, leaving him to take care of their children.

The film is being produced by J.J. Abrams, who previously worked with Saldana on Star Trek, and financed by Megan Ellison, who executive produced True Grit. Shooting for Infinitely Polar Bear will take place in September, just before Saldana is scheduled to reprise her role as Uhura in the Star Trek sequel. [Vulture]

After the jump, Xavier Samuel and Myles Pollard board Drift, and ParaNorman adds to its voice cast.

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Josh Brolin to Direct and Star in ‘Pitz & Joe’?

Briefly: Josh Brolin has already written and directed a short film (in 2008, called X and starring his daughter, Eden) and is now looking to direct and star in an adaptation of the play Pitz & Joe. The play is by Dominique Cierci, and the screenplay for the adaptation is being written by Maya Forbes (Monsters vs Aliens).

The original info came from a Pajiba tweet, and The Playlist confirmed Mr. Brolin’s interest, and the writing duties of Maya Forbes. The play features two characters: a young woman and her brother, who suffers from brain damage incurred in a motorcycle accident. The play is set years after the crash, but flashback explore their history and relationship. Sounds like intense and potentially difficult emotional waters for a first-time feature director to navigate, but given the set of master directors with whom Josh Brolin has worked, hopefully he’s learned a thing or two.

Briefly: Lest you ever think to yourself that J.J. Abrams already has more work set up than one man can possibly handle, here’s a story about the guy taking on one more project. According to Pajiba, he’s producing a film called Infinitely Polar Bear. Despite the immediate conclusions to which Lost fans might leap, this is in no way related to former projects from the producer.

Instead, it is “about a hospitalized bipolar man who attempts to hold onto his stability in order to take care of his two daughters while their mother does her best to start a career.” Oh. That sounds rather serious. Especially coming from Maya Forbes, writer of such tearjerkers as Monsters vs Aliens, The Rocker and The Larry Sanders Show. She’s directing this one as her debut film, and the credits on Larry Sanders suggest, hopefully, that there will be a certain amount of humor in the film. (Forbes also wrote the script.) Mark Ruffalo is being talked about as a candidate for the lead.

Paramount has purchased the rights to an article which ran in the New York Times on June 12th called Mystery on Fifth Avenue. JJ Abrams will produce a feature film based on the article which describes a 14th-floor apartment on upper Fifth Avenue which contains a Rube Goldberg maze of systems and contraptions conceived by a young architectural designer named Eric Clough. Apparently the apartment comes with its own soundtrack and a book, featuring a fictional narrative which will help their four pre-teen children uncover some the secrets, messages, games and treasures hidden inside the furniture and walls.

Screenwriters Maya Forbes and Wally Wolodarsky (The Rocker) have been hired to weave the idea into a feature film. I can definitely see a movie in the same vein as Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events or Spiderwick Chronicles (but without the fantasy elements), where a group of children must uncover the secrets of their New York City apartment, possibly in an attempt to save their parents or grandparents. You can read the entire article on NYTimes.com, or better yet, check out 15 photos from the real life Fifth Avenue apartment at this link.

source: THR

dreamworks animation

Dreamworks Animation announced yesterday plans to make a series of 3D computer animated films. First up will be Monsters vs Aliens, which starts production in spring and is aiming for a May 22nd 2009 release.

Digital 3D seems to be the hot new thing in Hollywood. RealD just inked a deal to expand it’s Digital 3-D experience to an additional 200 screens (AMC, Regal, Cinemark, and more). Disney’s March 30th release of Meet the Robinsons will go out on more than 600 digital screens
Monsters vs Aliens is supposedly based on the horror comicbook Rex Havoc and the Ass-Kickers of the Fantastic, which is about a monster hunter called upon to battle aliens who disrupt cable TV service. Screenwriter Scott Rosenberg (Con Air) was attached to the project for a while, before Maya Forbes (The Larry Sanders Show) and Wally Wolodarsky (The Simpsons) were brought in. Who knows what’s happened since.

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