Thursday, September 3, 2009

Up Next For Jason Reitman

Jason Reitman has a slew of projects in the works, and now we have one more to throw on the pile. Word is that Reitman is currently adapting Labor Day, a novel by Joyce Maynard, into a screenplay, though there's no news of scheduling or confirmation that he'll direct it himself.

I personally don't see any reason why he wouldn't. His first two features, Thank You For Smoking and Juno, did remarkably well and screenings of his new film, Up in the Air, have gone splendidly. I expect we'll be hearing more and more about that one in the coming weeks, as it has its premiere at TIFF in just a few days.

The synopsis for Labor Day from Amazon:

"With the end of summer closing in and a steamy Labor Day weekend looming
in the town of Holton Mills, New Hampshire, thirteen-year-old Henry—lonely,
friendless, not too good at sports—spends most of his time watching television,
reading, and daydreaming about the soft skin and budding bodies of his female
classmates. For company Henry has his long-divorced mother, Adele—a onetime
dancer whose summer project was to teach him how to foxtrot; his hamster, Joe;
and awkward Saturday-night outings to Friendly's with his estranged father and
new stepfamily. As much as he tries, Henry knows that even with his jokes and
his "Husband for a Day" coupon, he still can't make his emotionally fragile mother happy. Adele has a secret that makes it hard for her to leave their house, and seems to possess an irreparably broken heart.

But all that changes on the Thursday before Labor Day, when a mysterious bleeding man named Frank approaches Henry and asks for a hand. Over the next five days, Henry will learn some of life's most valuable lessons: how to throw a baseball, the secret to perfect piecrust, the breathless pain of jealousy, the power of betrayal, and the importance of putting others - especially those we love - above ourselves. And the knowledge that real love is worth waiting for."

It will be interesting to see Reitman take on another coming-of-age story. He's definitely got a solid (though short) resume and is one of the best comedy directors working right now, in my opinion.

Joyce Maynard is also the author of the 1992 novel To Die For, which was later adapted into a wonderful film starring Nicole Kidman and directed by the genius Gus Van Sant. I'll be checking out Labor Day for sure sometime soon, and hoping Reitman and the material will be a good fit.


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