Since news first broke about Sam Mendes making the leap to comedy with John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph, I've become awfully curious to see if the man famous for heavy subject matter can pull off a straight rom-com. Coming Soon has received a press announcement from the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tuscon, Arizona, and according to them, the spa has been chosen as one of the locations for the road flick. More importantly, we now know that the film is going by the slightly awkward title of Farlanders.
McSweeney's founder Dave Eggers co-wrote the script with his wife, Vendela Vida, and the story centers on an expectant couple played by Krasinski (sporting some much-maligned facial hair) and Rudolph as they travel the US looking for the perfect place to start their family. The film has a big ensemble cast to play the various 'characters' our couple will meet along the way -- including some very funny women like Catherine O'Hara, Cheryl Hines, and Allison Janney.
Production began back in April, and according to the release, the Arizona shoot will begin in June. Some of the other locations include Colorado, Connecticut, and Florida. There is no official release date, so I guess I'll have plenty of time to get used to that title.
Farlanders The Untitled Sam Mendes Comedy is due to arrive in theaters in 2009.
Press release below ...
Lights, camera, action! Academy Award-winning film director Sam Mendes is bringing his newest project to JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tucson. The cast and production crew of an untitled new movie comedy is set to shoot at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa this June.
The JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa was chosen from among several locations throughout the country and is the only Tucson locale selected for Mr. Mendes' newest motion picture.
"This has been a great 12 months for the resort," explained Matt Brody, Starr Pass' Director of Marketing. In January, Starr Pass was the only resort in Southern Arizona to be named to Travel + Leisure's 2008 World's Best Hotels List and also earned Condé Nast's prestigious Top 100 Golf Resorts designation.
"I'm not surprised that both Mr. Mendes and the film's scouting director, Jean Chien, fell in love with the resort. We are delighted to bring Hollywood back to Tucson and are looking forward to playing host to such a talented director and cast. The property will make the perfect backdrop for a movie that is sure to be a blockbuster hit."
Production, which began the week of April 20, will film throughout Connecticut followed by additional location work in Arizona, Colorado and Florida. Arizona filming begins June 1.
The film follows the journey of an expectant couple as they travel across the United States in search of a place to settle and raise a family. John Krasinski (The Office) and Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live) will play the lead roles. Rounding out the rest of the cast is an array of award-winning actors and actresses including Jeff Daniels (Terms of Endearment), Carmen Ejogo (Lackawanna Blues), Jim Gaffigan (My Boys), Maggie Gyllenhaal (The Dark Knight), Josh Hamilton (Alive), Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Allison Janney (American Beauty), Melanie Lynskey (Two and a Half Men), Chris Messina (Made of Honor), Catherine O'Hara (Waiting for Guffman) and Paul Schneider (Lars and the Real Girl).
While at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa, filming will focus on four areas of the resort: the resort's front drive, Starr Circle; a resort boardroom, which will be transformed into an office; Salud's patio; and the main lobby. Salud is Starr Pass' outdoor bar and terrace, which features a ceremonial tequila toast every evening at 5:30 p.m.
Since 1925, hundreds of movies and movie scenes have been filmed in and around Tucson. The film industry has relied on the desert Southwest to provide stunning vistas and charming locales to feature films of every genre.
The film's original screenplay is written by Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida. Big Beach Films is producing and co-financing the film, with Focus Features co-financing and distributing worldwide. Sam Mendes won the Academy Award as Best Director for American Beauty (1999).