The Academy loves Stephen Daldry. Every film he has directed thus far -- "Billy Elliot," "The Hours" and "The Reader" -- has been nominated for Best Director, with the last two also taking Best Picture nods, in addition to a host of other honors. Even though Daldry's latest effort, an adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer's "Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close," has yet to be unveiled this late in the game, the film seems poised to hit it big with voters with its post 9/11 dramatics.
The two trailers so far haven't quite impressed despite hitting some right notes but we now have a heap of new images to give us a better look at newcomer Thomas Horn; his all-star parents Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks; and the variety supporting players including Viola Davis, Jeffrey Wright, John Goodman and Max Von Sydow -- all of whom will hopefully invigorate the drabby material.
The story follows Oskar Schell (Horn), a nine-year-old boy from Manhattan whose father (Hanks) dies on 9/11. Two years later, the boy discovers a key belonging to his father, which sends him on a search through the city, believing it will lead to a final message from his deceased parent. A report in the NY Times has described early buzz from the film as "superb, but emotionally harrowing — one box of Kleenex might not suffice." Yikes.
"Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close" will hit theaters on Christmas Day.