Zach Braff made headlines back in the spring when he launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a sort-of-follow-up to his 2004 indie hit Garden State. The campaign worked, and he was able to make Wish I Was Here, a film about a 35-year-old dad who is lost but starts to find his way as he home-schools his kids. The film premiered at Sundance in January, and audiences will get to see the film in theaters beginning with a July 18 release date in New York and Los Angeles, according to Variety. The movie, starring Braff himself and Kate Hudson, will begin showing in other cities on July 25.
Tag: Zach Braff (1-7 of 7)
Zach Braff hasn’t brought a movie to Sundance in a decade — 2004′s Garden State — and his fans have been patiently waiting for his return. Another group that’s pretty excited about Braff’s latest, Wish I Was Here, is his cast, seven of whom (including Braff himself) piled onto one couch in Park City, Utah, to talk to EW’s Anthony Breznican about the film.
Below, watch Braff with Ashley Greene, Kate Hudson, Josh Gad, Donald Faison (Scrubs reunion alert!), Joey King, and Pierce Gagnon:
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Ten years after Garden State became a breakout hit — and the unofficial soundtrack — of the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, Zach Braff returned to Park City yesterday with his long-awaited, Kickstarter-financed follow-up, Wish I Was Here. Braff said when he made Garden State that he “just wanted to write a movie that describes how I felt about being 28 in 2004.” With Wish I Was Here, which he co-wrote with his brother Adam, he’s taken a similar approach. He plays a struggling commercial actor whose judgmental, conservative Jewish father (Mandy Patinkin) is dying of cancer. When he and his overburdened working wife (Kate Hudson) can no longer afford tuition for their two children’s private school, he decides to home-school them in an unconventional way while clinging to hopes for a resurgence in his acting career.
“Garden State was all the things me and my [20-something] friends were obsessing about and talking about and worrying about, and I put it into a movie,” Braff told the audience after the film’s premiere. “And with this, my brother and I were sharing the things that we’re talking about. He’s got two young children. What are the things he’s wrestling with in teaching them. And with me, it’s my own spirituality. I find the films that I love the most — as a film lover — are the ones that are someone’s unique story. This isn’t a film that anyone else could’ve directed, or something that got passed around and got eventually made. No one else could tell this story that my brother and I wrote.”
Two Sundance favorites are heading back to the winter festival. Zach Braff and Kevin Smith will be in Park City this January, the former to premiere his Kickstarted-funded movie, Wish I Was Here, and the latter to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Clerks.
Braff made a big splash at Sundance 10 years ago, when he premiered Garden State at the festival. Last April, he announced a Kickstarter campaign to raise $2 million for his directorial follow-up. Fans responded and Braff reached the goal in just three days. Braff wrote the screenplay with his brother, Adam, and he also stars as a struggling actor and stay-at-home dad who decides to home-school his 5- and 12-year-old kids. “It’s about a family struggling to get by and barely surviving financially and the dad’s a bit of a f— up,” Braff told EW in April. “Basically it’s a story about a man learning to become a great husband and father and person.”
Wish I Were Here won’t play in competition but instead will debut as part of Sundance’s Premieres category. READ FULL STORY
Casting Net: Kate Hudson joins Zach Braff's Kickstarter project. Plus: Liam Hemsworth, Peter Dinklage, more
• Kate Hudson (Something Borrowed) is set to join Zach Braff’s Wish I Was Here. The story follows 35-year-old husband, father, and struggling actor Aiden Bloom (Braff), who decides to home school his kids when his father (Homeland’s Mandy Patinkin, playing another Saul) has to stop funding their private education. Hudson will play the part of Braff’s wife. Braff famously funded this project through a Kickstarter campaign that actually still has three days left. At the time of posting, the project had raised over $690K beyond its goal of $2 million. The film also stars Anna Kendrick (Pitch Perfect), Josh Gad (1600 Penn), and Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory). [Deadline]
• The Hunger Games’ Liam Hemsworth will play a surfer turned fighter pilot in Aurora Rising. Written by Christian Gudegast (A Man Apart), the movie will tell the story of Hemsworth’s character who gets recruited to be part of an elite team just in time to help out with an escalating conflict abroad. The Australian actor will also be reprising his role as Gale Hawthorne in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, out November 22. [Deadline]
Just three days after Zach Braff posted his hotly-anticipated-by-someone-apparently Garden State follow-up on Kickstarter, Wish I Was Here has already hit its $2 million fundraising goal. An anxious nation can now rest easy, knowing that Braff will be able to film his tale of a struggling thirtysomething actor who home-schools his kids — while having expensive dream sequences about being a Space-Knight with a Flying Robot-Squire. One particularly deep-pocketed Braff supporter made a $10,000 donation, therefore earning the most prized reward: Being a cast member in Wish I Was Here, which involves speaking a line of dialogue written by Zach Braff. (SPOILER ALERT: The dialogue will be melancholy, but whimsical.) READ FULL STORY
Zach Braff just became the second most high-profile film project on Kickstarter — and he wasn’t quite expecting all the attention. “I feel like one of those people who you hear the stories about, actors get woken up early because they won some award,” Braff told us this morning on the heels of the announcement of his next directorial project, Wish I Was Here, for which he’s hoping to raise $2 million through Kickstarter.
Fans of either Braff or Kickstarter will be quick to assume two things about the project: That Wish I Was Here is Garden State-y (or Scrubs: The Movie) and that Braff has only jumped onto the platform after seeing the massive, $5.7 million success it gave to Rob Thomas’ Veronica Mars. Both assumptions are both right and wrong.
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