Philip Seymour Hoffman is on a roll. Following his impressive acting kudos for “The Master” – in which he and co-star Joaquin Phoenix shared a best acting award at the Venice Film Festival – the publicity firm Falco Ink just announced Hoffman’s next project will be behind the camera as the director of “Ezekiel Moss,” a ghost story set in the Depression, about a young, “imaginative boy living in a small dead end town who befriends a mysterious drifter who may or may not have the supernatural ability to communicate with the dead.”
The Black List, which is Hollywood’s list of most liked unproduced screenplays and comes out in the middle of December each year, voted the script, written by Keith Bunin, one of the top 10 scripts of 2011. The film is a Likely Story and Mandalay Pictures production in association with Hoffman’s Cooper’s Town Productions. Anthony Bregman of Likely Story and Cathy Schulman of Mandalay Pictures will produce. Also producing are Stefanie Azpiazu of Likely Story, Adam Stone of Mandalay Pictures and Emily Ziff of Cooper's Town Productions. Sara Murphy of Cooper’s Town will co-produce. Casting has just begun on the project and has not been announced.
As acclaimed for his work on the stage – he was nominated for a Tony Award this year for “Death of a Salesman” – as on film, this will be Hoffman’s second stint as a director. Hoffman’s first feature film was “Jack Goes Boating” in 2010, which received three Independent Spirit nominations, including for best first screenplay for Robert Glaudini.
Hoffman is currently filming “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” He also stars in “A Late Quartet,” about a world-renowned quartet also featuring Catherine Keener and Christopher Walken, which will be released later this fall.
Producer Cathy Schulman said in a release, “Philip Seymour Hoffman is one of the great talents of our generation. We are thrilled to be in his capable hands directing this captivating and gothic exploration of faith and the supernatural.”
Cooper's Town Productions is Philip Seymour Hoffman and Emily Ziff’s film production company founded in 2003. The company's first production was 2005's “Capote,” which was nominated for five Academy Awards including Best Picture and for which Hoffman received the Best Actor Oscar. Most recently they also produced “Jack Goes Boating.”
Meanwhile Paul Thomas Anderson’s cult drama “The Master,” has pulled in impressive figures in its opening weekend, playing on just five screens in New York and Los Angeles. The Weinstein Company film made $736, 311 over the weekend with a per-screen average of $147, 262 according to boxofficemojo. The film is set to open in more cities in upcoming weeks.