By Simon Dang | The Playlist September 12, 2011 at 2:45AM
Ever since the controversial finale to "The Sopranos" in 2007, David Chase has been fairly low key, avoiding the spotlight perhaps as a method to steer clear from questions about how his defining series concluded.
Late last year, though, the acclaimed writer-director began work on a '70's-set coming-of-age rock 'n' roll story tentatively titled "The Twylight Zones," his feature directorial debut, which seemingly draws from Chase's own experiences chasing the musical dream in Jersey. We had hoped that the film might sneak into the 2011 calendar as an Oscar dark horse but, in a bittersweet move, Paramount Vantage has revealed that, while there was some talk of releasing the picture this year, they'll hold onto the film until 2012, slotting it for an award-season release on October 12th.
One reason for the prolonged release (we call it such as it began lensing in the first quarter of this year) is reportedly Paramount's fall schedule, which will seemingly focus on Jason Reitman's "Young Adult" starring Charlize Theron, widely expected to feature in some form on Oscar night. The studio, though, is reportedly hoping Chase's film will headline its 2012 campaign, with specific mention from Deadline for James Gandolfini, reuniting here with his 'Sopranos' helmer as "a post-war, post-Depression Era parent who has worked hard to give his son everything he didn’t have but now feels some jealousy about the free-wheeling life the boy gets to experience."
Don't let that fool you though; the real stars of the pic are the inexperienced trio John Magaro, Will Brill and Jack Huston who play the leading gang of musicians, with Gandolfini supporting alongside Bella Heathcote, Brad Garrett, Lisa Lampanelli, Christopher McDonald and Molly Price. Another former 'Sopranos' star and former E Street Band member Steve Van Zandt is also on board as the music supervisor, and will produce alongside Chase and Oscar winner Mark Johnson ("Rainman").
We're fairly excited by the prospect of Chase's first venture into cinema and, as disappointing as news of the prolonged wait is, we're more than happy for Chase to perfect what he has at his disposal. Plus, 2012? What a year it's going to be.