By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com March 24, 2011 at 1:18AM
It's safe to say at this point that we're looking forward to Wes Anderson's "Moon Rise Kingdom" as much as anything else that's coming out in 2012. The "Rushmore" helmer, one of the most important voices to appear in American film in the last couple of decades, had shown signs of ossifying with the misfires "The Life Aquatic" and "The Darjeeling Limited," and it didn't help that film festivals were suddenly inundated with streams of poor quality Anderson knock-offs. But 2009's animated excursion "Fantastic Mr. Fox" turned out to be the director's best work in years, and early word suggests that he's edging out of his comfort zone for his next picture.
When the project was initially announced last November, the cast was full of names who'd never worked with the director before, aside from Bill Murray, who's appeared in every one of his films since "Rushmore." Bruce Willis, Tilda Swinton, Edward Norton and Frances McDormand were all said to be on board for the film, a 1960s-set tale about two young adults who fall in love and run away, leading to panic in their small New England town. However, it seems that some of the traditional Anderson players may feature in the film as well -- Owen Wilson hinted a few months back that he might have a small role in the film, and now one of the actors most associated with the director seems to have joined as well.
Providence's Examiner reports that not only will the film be shooting in the spring in Rhode Island, but that Jason Schwartzman has joined Norton, McDormand, Willis, Swinton and Murray in the film. Schwartzman was, of course, the lead in "Rushmore," and was also among the cast for "The Darjeeling Limited" (and its accompanying short "Hotel Chevalier"), and "Fantastic Mr. Fox." While no official word has come in about the casting (announced by local agency LDI Casting) -- inquiries with reps for the actor weren't returned as of press time -- it seems pretty legitimate at this point. There's no word on the role that Schwartzmann would take, but we're glad to see him back in the fold as his best work has always been with Anderson.
With Rhode Island's tax credit program likely to expire on July 1st, the film needs to get before cameras sooner rather than later, which backs up what we've heard about a May start date -- Steven Feinberg, of The Rhode Island Film & Television Office, says that it'll film on Aquidneck Island, as well as a number of other locations around Rhode Island. We're firmly excited about this one, assuming everything that's rumored pans out. There's no word on a release date yet, but with a May start date, could a Cannes 2012 bow be on the cards?