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'The Way, Way Back' trailer: Sam Rockwell and Steve Carell star in Sundance summer comedy -- VIDEO

We’ve seen Steve Carell do funny. We’ve seen him play crazy. We’ve seen him do awkward. But in Sundance favorite The Way, Way Back, Carell plays mean, and he’s the one picking on the awkward guy: his girlfriend’s teenage son, Duncan (Liam James).

The Way, Way Back follows Duncan through his summer break that’s rather nightmarish whenever he’s with his mom (Toni Collette) and her boyfriend, but has bright moments whenever he’s at the local water park, where he strikes up a friendship with one of the slacker employees (Sam Rockwell).

The trailer shows off a good chunk of Way, Way Back‘s impressive cast, including Allison Janney, Maya Rudolph, Rob Corddry, and co-director/co-writer Jim Rash.

Check out the trailer, which kicks off with one of Carell’s toolish moments inspired by a traumatic moment in Rash’s real life, below: READ FULL STORY

'The Way, Way Back' is ready for the summer; nabs prime July release date

When The Way, Way Back premiered at Sundance last month, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash’s homage to Meatballs was the rare festival offering that had the fun feel of a summer movie. Now, it’s official. Fox Searchlight — which won a $10 million bidding war for the comedy — announced today that the comedy will be released on Friday, July 5. Sam Rockwell stars as a laid-back waterpark manager who takes a young teen (Liam James) under his wing during the boy’s difficult summer vacation with his single mom (Toni Collette) and her mean-spirited boyfriend (Steve Carell). Allison Janney, Maya Rudolph, Amanda Peet, and Rob Corddry also star.

It’s the first film written and directed by Faxon and Rash, who won an Oscar for co-writing The Descendents with Alexander Payne last year. “Nat and I grew up on John Hughes and Meatballs,” Rash, who also appears on NBC’s Community, told EW at Sundance. “Hughes knew how to explore teen problems without talking down to it. So we really, if anything, wanted to create a nostalgic feeling of a movie that hopefully crosses all those lines for everybody.”

Disney’s Lone Ranger and Universal’s Despicable Me 2 (also featuring Carell) are also slated to open that expanded Independence Day weekend, though those two are getting a head start with a Wednesday opening on July 3.

Read more:
Sundance 2013: ‘The Way, Way Back’ thrills, sells for big bucks

Sundance 2013: 'The Way, Way Back' makes huge splash with nostalgic summer comedy -- VIDEO

UPDATE: Sources close to The Way, Way Back confirm that Fox Searchlight has settled a deal to distribute the comedy for just under the record $10.5 million the company paid for Little Miss Sunshine in 2006. Terms are settled and negotiations are over, with Searchlight planning an announcement shortly.

Anyone who thought the Sundance Film Festival would suffer a post-first-weekend malaise did not anticipate The Way, Way Back, a throwback summer comedy from Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, the Oscar-winning screenwriters of The Descendents. There were 1,001 possible versions of Way Back that could’ve been made — 1,000 of them forgettable — but their tale of an awkward teenager (Liam James) whose nightmare beach vacation with his mom (Toni Collette) and her obnoxious boyfriend (Steve Carell) is salvaged by a gonzo mentor (Sam Rockwell) received a standing ovation from the capacity crowd at Park City’s Eccles Theater Monday afternoon.

Rash, who stars as Dean Pelton on NBC’s Community, was emotional even before the film started, indicative of the eight long years it took to bring their script to the screen and the personal nature of the protagonist’s struggle. In the first scene of the film, Duncan (James) is sitting in the way, way back of an old-fashioned station wagon when his potential stepfather callously asks how the teen grades himself on an attractiveness scale of 1 to 10. When the kid reluctantly answers 6, the grownup corrects him with only a 3. “That was inspired by a piece of a true story from me,” Rash said after the screening. “As I was asked what I thought I was on a scale of 1 to 10 by my stepfather at the time during a car trip to Michigan. We knew that was a great launch for understanding Duncan’s journey.”

READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Colin Firth, Cate Blanchett attached to Barbra Streisand-directed drama. Plus: Charlie Sheen, Reese Witherspoon, Maya Rudolph

• Type casting alert. Charlie Sheen will play the President of the United States in director Robert Rodriguez‘s exploitation thriller sequel, Machete Kills, Rodriguez announced Thursday on Twitter. The film will follow ex-Mexican Federale Machete (Danny Trejo) as he takes on a drug cartel for the U.S. government. Mel Gibson, Jessica Alba, Amber Heard, Sofia Vergara, and Zoe Saldana costar. [@Rodriguez]

• Reese Witherspoon is an alien! Specifically, a Venusian. The actress is attached to a feature adaptation of Dr. John Gray’s mega-bestseller Men Are From MarsWomen Are From Venus. Commercial director Bryan Buckley will make his feature directing debut with the film, which was adapted by Deborah Kaplan and Harry Elfont (Leap Year, Made of Honor). [Deadline]

• Maya RudolphRob Corddry, and Amanda Peet have joined The Way, Way Back, the coming-of-age dramedy penned by recent Oscar winners Jim Rash and Nat Faxon (The Descendants). The pair will also make their directorial debut with the project, as well as star in two small supporting roles. The cast also includes Sam RockwellToni ColletteSteve Carell, and Liam James (AMC’s The Killing), in the lead role of a teenager who spends a summer at a local water park. [Deadline]

• Max Minghella (The Social Network) is in preliminary talks to star opposite Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson in director Shawn Levy‘s comedy The Internship. Minghella would play an ambitious intern who squares off against Vaughn and Wilson, playing has-been salesmen who try to reboot their careers by taking internships at a technology company. [Variety]

• Bruce Greenwood (Star Trek), Michael Gladis (AMC’s Mad Men) and Matt Letscher (ABC’s Scandal) have all signed onto the West Memphis Three film Devil’s Knot. Greenwood will play the presiding judge in the case that controversially sent three Arkansas teenagers to jail for the murder of three young boys; Gladis and Letscher would play defense attorneys in the case. Atom Egoyan (The Sweet Hereafter) is directing. [THR, Deadline]

Read more:
Casting Net: Jim Parsons, Rihanna to give voice to ‘Happy Smekday!’ Plus: Jason Schwartzman, Rob Reiner, Edgar Ramirez
Casting Net: Jon Hamm may face off against Larry David. Plus: Jon Bernthal, Amber Heard
Casting Net: Tony winner James Corden to play Paul Potts. Plus: Alex Pettyfer, Cam Gigandet, Ed Helms

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