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Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray & More In Talks For Wes Anderson's 'Moon Rise Kingdom'

by Kevin Jagernauth
November 10, 2010 8:39 AM
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Tilda Swinton & Frances McDormand Also Circling

Deadline reports that one helluva cast including Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand and Tilda Swinton are in talks to join Wes Anderson's next film, "Moon Rise Kingdom."

Written by Anderson and Roman Coppola (the two last collaborated on "The Darjeeling Limited" and co-directed a recent ad for Stella Artois), "'Moon Rise Kingdom' is set in the 60s. Two young adults fall in love and run away. Leaders in their New England town are sticking [to] the idea that they've disappeared and go in search of them." Should everyone shake hands and sign contracts, Norton would play "a scout leader who brings his charges on a search"; Willis "the town sheriff who’s also looking," and who is having an affair with the missing girl’s mother who would be played by McDormand, while her husband would be played by Murray. No word yet on Swinton's role.

News of the project first surfaced in September when it was revealed that Anderson was looking to cast a boy and a girl, aged 12 years old for the lead roles. No word yet if he's found them, but clearly, they will be playing the runaways and we imagine the action will cut between their journey and the search by the adults in town.

The casting is intriguing as Murray is the only actor who is part of Anderson's regular troupe of players, but it does indicate that perhaps he's trying to shake things up a bit from this usual routine. We've been hoping that Anderson's next project would mark a gear change for the director and it definitely looks like it is. The shift to younger protagonists and a period setting has us very, very excited. And naturally, a '60s setting will let Anderson go wild with the soundtrack (he's already shown a fantastic ear for songs from that era) and we can't wait to see what his meticulous eye will do with set design for the era.

The film will be produced by Indian Paintbrush who handled "The Fantastic Mr. Fox" and "The Darjeeling Limited," and no word yet on a distributor (though Fox Searchlight is likely a strong contender). The film will go in front of cameras next spring, no release date has been set.

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  • BradZuhl | November 11, 2010 4:39 AMReply

    I just don't see Norton and Willis in Wes-World.

  • Tyrone Wood | November 11, 2010 2:53 AMReply

    Whats going on with that script that Wes Anderson wrote something called the Rothaum Suite or something like that...the story was set in the art world in NYC...I remember before Robert Altman died his next project after Prarie Home Companion was also a NYC set movie called Paint! about the artworld in new york...I would KILL to see P.T Anderson make Altman's Paint!

  • Hmm | November 11, 2010 2:50 AMReply

    "I think Wes Anderson’s oeuvre as a movie maker is an acquired taste and to dismiss his efforts as awful, offers some insights into the personal viewing habits of the person who offers the critique, than it does about Anderson himself."

    Funny stuff. You don't watch a lot of films, do you? Wes Anderson is some avant-garde "acquired taste" to you? Says a lot about your laughable attempt at pretension. At least throw out some decent names like Mikio Naruse and Bill Viola!!

  • Sean | November 11, 2010 1:59 AMReply

    Maybe cause I'm a fanboy but I adore Life Aquatic and Darjeeling. Sure they were full of quirkness, even more so, but I still found them to be quite enjoyable. If anything, I find Tenenbaums to be his weaker effort.

  • Hayden Maxwell | November 11, 2010 1:00 AMReply

    Maybe awful is too strong of a word. Those two are failures though. The Life Aquatic just has too much going on and Wes tripped over himself in the balancing act where The Darjeeling Limited has the most intelligence-insulting visual metaphor ever. I did like Owen Wilson's performance in it however.

  • paul | November 11, 2010 12:31 AMReply

    I think Wes Anderson's oeuvre as a movie maker is an acquired taste and to dismiss his efforts as awful, offers some insights into the personal viewing habits of the person who offers the critique, than it does about Anderson himself.

  • hmm | November 11, 2010 12:31 AMReply

    i'm very pessimistic that Wes Anderson without Owen Wilson as a co-writer can be the Wes Anderson we want him to be. Let's face facts.

  • Hayden Maxwell | November 10, 2010 11:26 AMReply

    While I agree about Darjeeling and Life Aquatic, Mr. Fox was no lark. One of his best films. It makes me happy like no other film he's done. It just has that warm feeling that movies like Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Big Lebowski, and Groundhog Day had before it. A truly great film.

  • M | November 10, 2010 10:51 AMReply

    So two 12 year old fall in love? and run away?


  • zxcvb | November 10, 2010 10:30 AMReply

    Good to see him getting back to his strengths. Let's face it. Mr. Fox was a fun, cute lark, but Darjeeling and Life Aquatic were god awful.

    And Ed Norton in a leading role sounds just perfect. He can do the deadpan comedy thing while injecting depth and vulnerability into the drama.

  • Sean | November 10, 2010 10:13 AMReply

    Wow. Can't say i saw this happening. Well, maybe just the Bill Murray bit but other than that, everything sounds like it's completely a new vision for Wes.

  • marga | November 10, 2010 9:56 AMReply

    mmmm. sounds simply wonderful. I am super excited!!!!

  • modage | November 10, 2010 9:15 AMReply

    Also: returns to a familiar theme with Ritchie and Margot running away from home in The Royal Tenenbaums.

  • modage | November 10, 2010 9:13 AMReply

    This sounds really interesting. I wonder if Elle Fanning will be cast as 1 of the 12 year olds?

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