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Tag: Joe Swanberg (1-6 of 6)

Anna Kendrick and Melanie Lynskey lead very different lives in Joe Swanberg's 'Happy Christmas'

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It may not be revolutionary to note that twentysomethings are different from thirtysomethings, but in director Joe Swanberg’s latest, Happy Christmas, he takes that idea to the next level when Anna Kendrick’s hard-partying Jenny moves in with her brother (Swanberg), his wife (Melanie Lynskey), and their young child.

Though Jenny might neglect responsibility at every turn, her presence actually helps Kelly (Lynskey) confront the state of her own artistic aspirations, allowing Swanberg to explore the very real tensions that emerge when one party in the relationship takes on the lion’s share of domestic responsibilities. “I’m excited about the feminist issues that the movie tackles. I hope especially women come to the movie and see something that they relate to and that it gets husbands and wives talking about what those family roles are and maybe how to make them work for both people,” Swanberg told EW in a conversation about the intensely personal film and his fascination with all different varieties of female characters.

Check out the Q&A after the jump. READ FULL STORY

Director Zack Parker on his unforgettable thriller 'Proxy'

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Seeing director Zack Parker’s new thriller Proxy will undoubtedly represent two of the most unforgettable hours you spend in the cinema this year — if, that is, you can get past the first five minutes. In the film, Alexia Rasmussen plays a heavily pregnant woman named Esther who loses her baby as the result of a brutal beating, which takes place in the aforementioned opening minutes, and subsequently befriends another bereaved mother called Melanie (Alexa Havins) at a grief support group. But is Melanie quite what she seems? And, for that matter, is Esther? READ FULL STORY

Sundance 2014: Magnolia and Paramount pick up Joe Swanberg's Anna Kendrick movie

Christmas came early for Joe Swanberg, Magnolia Pictures, and Paramount Pictures. In the first announced deal of the Sundance Film Festival, which began Thursday, the two film companies agreed to co-distribute Happy Christmas, the holiday dramedy that stars Anna Kendrick, Melanie Lynskey, Mark Webber, Lena Dunham, and Swanberg, who also wrote and directed. Terms were not announced.

Magnolia, which distributed Swanberg’s last movie, Drinking Buddies (also starring Kendrick), will distribute the film in theaters and via VOD. Paramount Home Media Distribution will distribute internationally and handle U.S. physical home entertainment. “Happy Christmas is a personal and important film for me and I can’t imagine better partners to help connect it with audiences around the world,” Swanberg said in a statement.

In the film, Kendrick plays a woman who crashes in her older brother’s basement after a recent breakup. She reconnects with a college friend (Dunham), and their antics shake up the household and provoke her more responsible sister-in-law (Lynskey), whose own life, it turns out, isn’t everything she had planned.

Magnolia is eyeing a theatrical release in the summer 2014. Drinking Buddies opened last July 25.

Sundance 2014: Kristen Stewart, Anne Hathaway, and Lena Dunham lead the ladies to Park City

If the Sundance Film Festival has always been the place to discover tomorrow’s biggest stars in front of and behind the camera during the past 30 years, it seems to have become even more fruitful in recent years. From young filmmakers like Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station), Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild), and Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter, Mud) to ready-to-launch superstars like Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) and Dane DeHaan (Kill Your Darlings), Hollywood has quickly found its future in the snowy peaks of Park City. “One of the biggest changes in the last 30 years is how independent film has become such a vital part of the cultural landscape now,” says Sundance director John Cooper. “It’s no longer an outside-Hollywood thing. It’s its own art form, and we’re feeling the power of that and the surge of that as we move forward.”

Put another way, though, independent film is no longer just for aspiring filmmakers and undiscovered actors. Yes, it’s still the place where unknowns arrive with hopes of becoming the next Felicity Jones or Lee Daniels. But it also represents opportunities for established superstars to play, to flex dormant muscles, and to reinvent themselves. Among today’s announcement of Sundance’s 2014 Dramatic and Documentary competitions, as well as its NEXT section — which highlights digital filmmaking with an eye on tomorrow’s storytelling techniques — were films starring Kristen Stewart, who plays a conflicted Guantanamo Bay prison guard in Camp X-Ray; Oscar-winner Anne Hathaway, who plays the sister of a comatose musician in Song One; and Saturday Night Live alums Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader reuniting to play distant twins in The Skeleton Twins a drama!

Sundance wouldn’t be Sundance, though, if it were just its rich and famous alums coming back to play. “I was particularly proud watching Catching Fire and sort of remembering Winter’s Bone and remembering Jennifer Lawrence at the festival as a young actress, seeing what she was going to become,” says Cooper. “There’s some great discoveries that I think are going to come out of this festival, too.”

In fact, Cooper and Sundance’s director of programming Trevor Groth think this year’s crop of films — culled from more than 12,000 submissions and including 96 world premieres — is the deepest and most polished slate in history. READ FULL STORY

Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson are 'Drinking Buddies' -- EXCLUSIVE POSTER

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The new rom-com starring Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson as friends with the possibility of benefits has an official poster, seen here first on EW. READ FULL STORY

Cheers! Magnolia Pictures acquires Anna Kendrick comedy 'Drinking Buddies'

With a cast including Anna Kendrick, Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, and Ron Livingston, it was only a matter of time before Joe Swanberg’s largely improvised comedy Drinking Buddies would get a distributor. After premiering at the SXSW Film Festival, Magnolia Pictures announced that it had acquired the North American rights to the film. It’s expected to hit theaters later this year.

Set in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, Drinking Buddies tells the story of a pair of brewery (Wilde and Johnson) employees who flirt their way from friendship to…something else. Innocent enough, until you realize that both are in relationships. Kendrick and Livingston play the poor fools who can’t compete with craft beer-induced love.

READ FULL STORY

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