Bradley Cooper gets shady in Sundance mystery 'The Words' -- EXCLUSIVE POSTER

The-Words

Image Credit: Jonathan Wenk

Design: Bethany Nagy

Now Bradley Cooper is the “textiest man alive.”

This poster for his upcoming Sundance mystery-romance The Words depicts The Hangover actor in silhouette, rendered by lines from the movie’s screenplay — a nod to the movie’s themes about how our use of words defines us (especially if they’re not ours to begin with).

Cooper stars as a struggling writer whose wife (Zoe Saldana) buys a valise for him in an antiques shop, which happens to contain the manuscript for a lost masterwork by a Hemingway-esque writer (Jeremy Irons). Things take a dark turn when he decides to publish it as his own work. (Click the image at the left for a more detailed version.)

The Words is the closing night movie for the festival, which runs from Jan. 19-29. Co-writers and co-directors Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal originally penned the script 12 years ago. Thankfully, they never lost it in and old briefcase.

“We started by talking about writers and their lost work. What if you lost all your work? How long would it take you to move on?” says Sternthal.

“That led us to a question, what if you found the work?” Klugman adds.

Olivia Wilde co-stars as “someone who wants to be a great writer, and also wants to know the truth about what happened with this book,” Sternthal says.

While it’s difficult to tell a cinematic story about writing (a guy sitting at a keyboard is hard to dramatize), Sternthal and Klugman describe The Words almost as a heist film. It’s challenging to write well, but the tools are available to anyone who wants them — which means they are also easily stolen. “When you’ve been in this industry and try to be an actor or a director — to be anything — you need so many elements to come into place. You need money. You need someone to say, basically, ‘It’s okay, you can do this.’ But to be a writer, to work with words, you need a pen and paper,” Klugman says.

“And the best thing about it is, if it sucks, you can just throw it out,” Sternthal jokes.

On Twitter: @Breznican

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