Briefly: Walter Salles has landed on a film to follow On the Road; trouble is, doing so means another director has left the project in question. Scott Cooper, director of Crazy Heart, was set to make the true-life story The Man in the Rockefeller Suit last year. But now he’s off the project and Salles is on in his palce.

Variety reports that things are still early and that producers at Fox Searchlight are looking for a screenwriter to adapt Mark Seal‘s 2011 book.

The story is a good one, though: it follows German-born Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter, who arrived in the U.S. as a teenager in the late ’70s and began assuming various identities. He eventually settled on that of Clark Rockefeller, “reluctant scion of the family with the country’s most famous name,” and capitalized on the false persona to climb the ranks of upper-crust East Coast society — living in luxury, landing prestigious Wall Street jobs, and even maintaining a 12-year marriage with businesswoman Sandra Boss, who was unaware of his true identity. His long-term con fell apart in the ’00s, when Boss divorced him and he was arrested for kidnapping his daughter. In March 2011, Gerhartsreiter was charged with the 1985 murder of a California man named Jonathan Sohus.

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On the Road is one of those books people live their life by. It changes perception. People read and reread it, discuss its particulars, and keep a copy in their luggage when they decide to act on its inspiration and go on a trip just like the characters Dean Moriarty, Sal Paradise and Marylou. Most of the time filming a work of literary genius like that is near impossible, especially one that lacks a traditional narrative structure. The film version of On the Road just about gets it right.

Director Walter Salles and screenwriter Jose Rivera have done as good a job of translating Kerouac’s tone and pace as possible with On the Road. Starring Garrett Hedlund (in the role of his career), Kristen Stewart, Sam Riley and featuring supporting performances by Viggo Mortensen, Amy Adams, Elizabeth Moss, Kirsten Dunst and others, the film echoes the free and easy tone defined by the book, filled with travel, drugs, sex, and philosophy. The question is: does that make for an entertaining film? The answer is complicated.

On the Road opens on December 21, but recently played as part of the AFI Fest Presented by Audi. Read more below.

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We’ve already seen a couple of trailers for Walter Salles‘ adaptation of Jack Kerouac‘s Beat classic On the Road, but the latest to hit may be the most arresting one yet. Thanks to sharp editing and a relentless pounding drumbeat, it does a fairly good job of capturing the heady exuberance of being young and carefree, hopped up on drugs, and in pursuit of the next awesome thing.

Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, and Kristen Stewart star as the central trio of Dean Moriarty, Sal Paradise, and Marylou as they journey across America, crossing paths with all manner of people along the way. The star-studded supporting cast includes Kirsten Dunst, Amy Adams, Viggo Mortensen, Tom Sturridge, Steve Buscemi, Elisabeth Moss, Alice Braga, and Terrence Howard. Check out the video after the jump.

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‘On the Road’ International Trailer

The release of Walter Salles‘ film version of Jack Kerouac‘s generational signpost novel On the Road rolls ever closer, following the film’s relatively successful bow at Cannes this past May. Not having a lot of interest in Kerouac at this point, I’m still very interested in the film to see how actors like Garrett Hedlund and Kristen Stewart do with their roles; both look a lot more energized than we often see from them. And then there’s Viggo Mortensen as a vague version of William S. Burroughs. I’d see just about any movie for that alone.

A new UK trailer has hit, and it gives us a bit more of all the elements of the film: the actors, the period recreation, the music, and a taste of the text through the trailer voiceover. Check it out below. Read More »

‘On the Road’ Finally Gets U.S. Distribution

After some thirty-odd years in development, On the Road is finally nearing the end of its long, long journey to the big screen. A week before the film’s scheduled debut at the Cannes Film Festival, IFC Films and Sundance Selects (subsets of AMC Networks) have closed a seven-figure deal for the U.S. distribution rights to the Walter Salles-directed adaptation, which features a strong roster of both rising and established stars.

Among them are leads Sam Riley and Garrett Hedlund, who play Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty (understood to be the fictional alter egos of author Jack Kerouac and his pal Neal Cassady), as well as Kristen Stewart, who plays Dean’s wife Mary Lou. Kirsten Dunst, Amy AdamsTom SturridgeDanny MorganAlice BragaElisabeth Moss, and Viggo Mortensen round out the supporting cast. More details after the jump.

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The primary lineup for the competition slate at the 2012 Cannes has been unveilend, and it is a very strong list of films. There are quite a few expected entries: David Cronenberg‘s Cosmopolis, Lee DanielsThe Paperboy, John Hillcoat‘s Lawless (formerly The Wettest County), and Andrew Dominik‘s Killing Them Softly (formerly Cogan’s Trade), and we already knew that Wes Anderson‘s Moonrise Kingdom would open the festival.

But the international lineup is even more exciting, with films such as Rust & Bone from Jacques Audiard, Amour from Micheal Haneke, The Hunt from Thomas Vinterberg, and Mekong Hotel from 2010 Palme d’Or winner Apichatpong Weerasethakul. As is occasionally the case with Cannes, this year’s lineup features many returning Cannes award winners; it’s a world-class program.

The downside to all of that is that Paul Thomas Anderson‘s The Master and Terrence Malick‘s as-yet untitled romance starring Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams and Javier Bardem didn’t show up in the list. There is some time for them to be added to the festival lineup in some measure, but (as expected) we’ll likely have to wait until this fall for The Master. As for the Malick movie… well, it’s Malick, so who knows?

You’ll find the lineup as it has been announced so far after the break. Read More »

It’s been a year since we last saw anything from Walter Salles‘ adaptation of the Jack Kerouac book On the Road. The film stars Garrett Hedlund as Dean Moriarty (aka the book’s fictionalized version of Neal Cassady), Sam Riley as Sal Paradise (Kerouac’s fictional alter-ego) and Kristen Stewart as Marylou.

The film shot quite some time ago. We ran set pics in late summer 2010, along with images for films that have long since come and gone, like True Grit, Buried and Let Me In. New images and a poster landed just recently, but now we’ve got something a lot better: the first trailer for the film. Check it out below. Read More »

Here are the first three images from Walter Salles‘ adaptation of Jack Kerouac‘s novel/semi-autobiography On the Road. The film stars Garrett Hedlund as Dean Moriarty (aka the fictionalized Neal Cassady), Sam Riley as Sal Paradise (the fictionalized Jack Kerouac) and Kristen Stweart as Marylou. See two more pics after the break. Read More »

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