Michael Keaton and Edward Norton have joined Emma Stone, Naomi Watts and Zach Galifianakis in the cast of screenwriter and director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's new theatre-themed feature film BIRDMAN, in the lead role of a fledgling playwright/director putting on his first Broadway show.
BIRDMAN is based on a short story by Raymond Carver and follows the journey of a former action movie star who is best known for portraying an iconic superhero - hitting close to home for Keaton given his BATMAN legacy, no doubt - but who has hit the skids career-wise in recent years. So, he decides to has embark on a new journey: to conquer Broadway.
In the purported "dark comedy" Keaton plays the actor/playwright/director grappling with not only writing and staging the play-within-the-film itself, but dealing with demanding lead actors and actresses (Watts essays the role of the play's female star; Ed Norton will play the male star), as well as the producer (Galifianakis) and his own personal relationships and how they play into the drama - his daughter/assistant (played by Stone), fresh from rehab, as well as his ex-wife (not yet cast), most importantly.
UPDATE: Edward Norton has been added to the cast in the role of the lead actor in the Carver-based play at the center of the film.
No further casting or details have been announced at this early stage of the process.
Given Inarritu's usual style as displayed in 21 GRAMS, BABEL, AMORES PERROS, BIUTIFUL and elsewhere, we may surmise the film will afford ample screentime to each of the aforementioned actors and continue the tradition of his trademark multiple-storyline, Altman-esque style while also grappling with pertinent social topics and weaving together a uniquely compelling narrative. Also, BIRDMAN will hopefully offer them all the tremendous dramatic opportunities given to the stars of Innaratu's tremendous previous films - perhaps most notable due to her casting here, Watts and her unforgettable turn as one of the leads of 21 GRAMS, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award in 2004.
BIRDMAN is set to be directed by Inarritu from his own script based on the Carver short story, co-written with Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris and Armando Bo.
Filming is scheduled to commence next month. No release date has yet been set.
Check out the original articles on the matter here and here.
Pat Cerasaro is a playwright and screenwriter currently in pre-production on his first feature film.|