Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman, 2008)

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Awesome Welles
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Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman, 2008)

#1 Post by Awesome Welles » Thu Aug 02, 2007 9:28 am

Charlie Kaufman's new project is a decadent, existential story of a theatre director, Caden (Philip Seymour Hoffman). Caden struggles with his life, love, identity, artistic endeavours and this is punctuated by a decadence that enters the script subtly and then becomes part of the fabric of the narrative. Caden's project involves him building a replica of New York in a warehouse. Through this project the characters involved in the production produce simulations of themselves, with a replication and repetition influencing the course of the narrative.

There are flourishes of Fellini's 8 1/2, Woody Allen, Existential philosophy, Philip K. Dick and much more but the script is Kaufman, any influences are only influences. The script is a tough, original, engaging, horrific, endearing work. Typical of Kaufman the script is also quirky, humorous, haunting, intense and charming all at once. The second act is far too long and the third act needs some work (however I have only read the first draft).

Whilst I have only read about Jacques Rivette's Out 1, there is something in this film which made me think of it. I could be completely wrong but I guess I'll have to see both films before I commit to that. Also the script is likely to have considerably changed from the draft that I have read. The script is a difficult piece for a first time director and I hope that Kaufman pulls it off. Hopefully more news on this project as it develops.

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Awesome Welles
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#2 Post by Awesome Welles » Wed Dec 05, 2007 5:46 pm

Found this article from the La Times if anyone is interested (Hoffman mentions Synecdoche in the last two paragraphs).

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Antoine Doinel
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#3 Post by Antoine Doinel » Wed Dec 05, 2007 7:17 pm

Interesting premise, but I hope it doesn't become a self-referential stunt like Adaptation.

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#4 Post by Awesome Welles » Mon Jan 21, 2008 10:30 am

This article is about script trading and talks about the script for Synechdoche, New York.

I thought Adaptation was pretty good fun. I think this will either be really, really great or just like Adaptation, good fun, but nothing to write home about. What worries me is it's his first movie directing and it's quite ambitious I wonder whether he'll be able to handle the movie visually.

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#5 Post by Steven H » Mon Jan 21, 2008 10:41 am

Antoine Doinel wrote:Interesting premise, but I hope it doesn't become a self-referential stunt like Adaptation.
If it's half as funny as Adaptation, it will be worth seeing, stunt or not.

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#6 Post by JSJUTK » Mon Jan 21, 2008 4:24 pm

This is the film that I anticipate the most in 2008. Seeing as I loved Being John Malkovich and was pretty fond of Adaptation., anything Kaufman does from here on out will be on my radar. Interesting to see how he'll do as a director.

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#7 Post by hot_locket » Mon Jan 21, 2008 5:50 pm

FSimeoni wrote:This article is about script trading and talks about the script for Synechdoche, New York.

I thought Adaptation was pretty good fun. I think this will either be really, really great or just like Adaptation, good fun, but nothing to write home about. What worries me is it's his first movie directing and it's quite ambitious I wonder whether he'll be able to handle the movie visually.
It can't be worse than Jonze's work with his scripts.

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#8 Post by toiletduck! » Mon Jan 21, 2008 6:06 pm

I think what you mean is Jonze can't work with anything worse than his scripts.

And, in the name of actually contributing to society:

Once again, I'm fascinated by a Kaufman premise, and once again, I'll be right there in line for a ticket. Hopefully I won't (once again) be kicking my own ass as I leave the theater for wasting another ten bucks.

-Toilet Dcuk

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Antoine Doinel
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#9 Post by Antoine Doinel » Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:46 pm


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#10 Post by David Ehrenstein » Tue Feb 05, 2008 6:40 pm

Doesn't sound like anything in Out 1 but it is remindful of Albee's Tiny Alice and several art works by Red Grooms and Joseph Cornell.

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miless
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#11 Post by miless » Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:08 pm

Antoine Doinel wrote:First Pic.

I do believe this link is broken.

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#12 Post by kaujot » Wed Feb 06, 2008 12:24 am

Just copy the link and paste it. That site doesn't allow hotlinking.

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#13 Post by Noir of the Night » Wed Feb 06, 2008 5:06 pm

It still doesn't work.

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Steven H
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#14 Post by Steven H » Wed Feb 06, 2008 5:12 pm

First Showing.net has a "First Look" piece.

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AWA
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#15 Post by AWA » Sat May 17, 2008 5:36 pm

Second image leaked finally

Cannes website features two new stills from the film plus more information - including confirmation that Jon Brion, who did an exceptional job with Eternal Sunshine, is back contributing the musical score.

3 clips now online.

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#16 Post by Andrew_VB » Sun May 18, 2008 4:23 pm

yes! this sounds good, but i'm so psyched for the new jon brion score.

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AWA
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#17 Post by AWA » Mon May 19, 2008 4:55 pm

New interview with Charlie on Hollywood Reporter website about the film.

The guy obviously doesn't enjoy interviews, as he's a little defensive. But he sounds happy with the film itself and motivated to do more directing.

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Antoine Doinel
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#18 Post by Antoine Doinel » Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:26 am

New poster.

Distributors are apparently concerned about the film's 124 minute length (WTF) and Kaufman is apparently very open to editing the film further to suit distributors needs. That said, the description of the film sounds amazing.

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AWA
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#19 Post by AWA » Sun Sep 07, 2008 5:20 pm

This film has been neglected in these parts for whatever reason for a while.

It has since been picked up by Sony Pictures Classics and is slated for an October 24th release date - with no additional editing. It is currently slated to be screened in Toronto next week.

Check out the press kit from Sony for the film here.

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mfunk9786
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#20 Post by mfunk9786 » Mon Sep 08, 2008 9:18 am

So, wait... is it hip to dislike Kaufman movies now? I didn't realize it until I read this thread... this site always manages to keep me up to date on what great things I'm supposed to turn my nose up at for no good reason.

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#21 Post by The Fanciful Norwegian » Mon Sep 08, 2008 9:26 am

mfunk9786 wrote:So, wait... is it hip to dislike Kaufman movies now?
Yes, this is exactly what everyone in this thread has been saying.

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Fierias
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#22 Post by Fierias » Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:25 pm

hip or unhip, of the 50 films I've seen at the Cannes and Toronto film festivals this year, Synecdoche is the best one. It's really spectacular.

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AWA
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#23 Post by AWA » Sat Sep 13, 2008 8:27 am

Unfortunately, it would appear the experience of directing a film - specifically being forced to be involved in the business end of things as well as a result of taking that position - has not been a pleasant experience for Charlie.

In this interview, he states his desire to write any future scripts is in doubt now because he plans to continue to direct his own scripts and thus must face the film industry pressures of getting financial backing, planning for financial return, targeting specific "audiences" in order to secure such financial planning, etc etc etc.

He goes on to state that he does not want to include marketable decisions in his creative process.

Which is fine, Charlie, but as much as I love the guy, that whining complaint is pretty disheartening. If he wants out from under the pressures of making such films, start doing them like Woody or Jarmusch does and make your stuff for $10-$15 million with overseas money. I don't know why he thinks he needs to serve Hollywood interests in order to write.

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Jeff
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#24 Post by Jeff » Wed Sep 17, 2008 11:27 pm


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Antoine Doinel
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#25 Post by Antoine Doinel » Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:09 am

Wow, I'm pleasantly surprised by the trailer which thankfully hints at very quirk-lite film. Does anyone know who's singing on the Jon Brion song?

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