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First Look: Two Julianne Moore Flicks, 'The English Teacher' and 'What Maisie Knew' Hit Screens in May

Photo of Anne Thompson and Maggie Lange By Anne Thompson and Maggie Lange | Thompson on Hollywood March 13, 2013 at 6:38AM

Julianne Moore is on a roll, winning a Primetime Emmy, SAG, and Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a miniseries or television movie for her ringer portrayal of Sarah Palin in "Game Change." And the actress has two movies coming out in May—a loosely adapted Henry James novel called "What Maisie Knew" and "The English Teacher."
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Julianne Moore and Greg Kinnear in 'The English Teacher'
Julianne Moore and Greg Kinnear in 'The English Teacher'

Julianne Moore is on a roll, winning a Primetime Emmy, SAG, and Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a miniseries or television movie for her ringer portrayal of Sarah Palin in "Game Change." And the actress has two movies coming out in May—a loosely adapted Henry James novel called "What Maisie Knew" and "The English Teacher."

'The English Teacher'
'The English Teacher'

One of Moore's strengths is her willingness not to play a nice person. David Siegel and Scott McGehee's contemporary take on James' heart-tugger debuted at Toronto (trailer below); Moore is terrific as a self-absorbed 40-something rock-star breaking up with her equally myopic art dealer husband Steve Coogan. The film is told from the perspective of their young child, Maisie (lovely Onata Aprile) as she processes her parents’ divorce and their new relationships. The problem: she could use some attention and isn't getting any. Moore's new boyfriend (Alexander Skarsgard) and nanny (Joanna Vanderham) seem to care more for her than her parents do. 

NPR's Linda Holmes wrote: "Moore is very good, if not entirely unexpected, as a nasty and self-involved bad mother."

"What Maisie Knew"
Millennium "What Maisie Knew"


Moore changes gears with a more quiet but front-and-center role as "The English Teacher," as a shy, unmarried high school English teacher living a small apartment in a small town. Rather than the volcanic emotional power plays in “What Maisie Knew,” here she's a lonely woman emerging from self-isolation. Nathan Lane, Lily Collins, Michael Angarano and Greg Kinnear join Moore in this feature directed by Craig Zisk.


This article is related to: What Maisie Knew, Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan, Greg Kinnear


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.