When the first footage debuted at Cannes, we got our first brief look at Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master. Now a new trailer has arrived, which makes the film seem oddly intense. The movie is a 1950s-set drama centered on the relationship between a charismatic intellectual known as ‘the Master’ (Phillip Seymour Hoffman), whose faith-based organisation begins to catch on in America, and a young drifter (Joaquin Phoenix) who becomes his right-hand man. The movie is loosely based on the birth of Scientology, although the company behind the movie has already reached out to the ‘religion’ to say they have nothing to worry about. Although with Scientology sometimes being a bit like an attack dog, we’ll have to see if they go on the offensive or not.
One of the effects of the financial crisis is that many directors who everyone agrees are extremely good but not particularly commercial have found it tough to get movies made. We haven’t had a film from Paul Thomas Anderson since 2007’s There Will Be Blood, largely he couldn’t get funding for love nor money. Now he’s back with The Master. The first footage debuted yesterday at Cannes and now we get a teaser trailer for the film, which undoubtedly has a bit of a There Will Be Blood vibe. Set in America in the years following World War II, a charismatic intellectual (Philip Seymour Hoffman) launches a faith-based organization and taps a young drifter (Joaquin Phoenix) as his right-hand man. But as the faith begins to gain a fervent following, the onetime vagabond finds himself questioning the belief system he has embraced, and his mentor.
Carey Mulligan seems to have realised it’s simply not possible to keep making about 30 films a year forever, so she’s had to step back from starring in Spike Jonze’s untitled new movie. However the vacancy is not being left open, as Variety reports that that Rooney Mara is now in talks to replace Mulligan.
News of the project first surfaced last March, when it was believed that Spike Jonze would direct from a screenplay by Charlie Kaufman. Now it seems Spike Jonze will direct from his own screenplay, which revolves around a man who falls in love with a computer’s voice. Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams and Samantha Morton are also attached to star.
If Rooney Mara’s deal is finalised, she will begin work on the untitled project after wrapping on Steven Soderbergh’s The Bitter Pill.