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TIFF: Jason Reitman to Lead Live Reading of 'American Beauty,' with Adam Driver, Sarah Gadon, Bryan Cranston, Christina Hendricks, Woody Harrelson UPDATED

Thompson on Hollywood By Maggie Lange | Thompson on Hollywood September 5, 2012 at 2:02PM

Jason Reitman brings his "Live Read" series to the Toronto International Film Festival with a table read of Alan Ball's screenplay for "American Beauty," the Oscar-winner that premiered at TIFF in 1999. The director of "Thank You for Smoking" and "Up in the Air" will announce the cast of the table read via his Twitter account over the next few days leading to the September 6 event. So far, Reitman has cast Adam Driver from "Girls" as Ricky Fitts (played by Wes Bentley in the film) and Sarah Gadon, from "Cosmopolis," as Angela (Mena Suvari's character). He announced that Mae Whitman will play Thora Birch's character and actor Nick Kroll from "Community," will read Peter Gallagher's part. For Lester Burnham, the lead role played by Kevin Spacey, Reitman just added Bryan Cranston. Christina Hendricks is set to play his wife (originally played by Annette Bening), and Woody Harrelson will read the part of his neighbor, Col. Frank Fitts.
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American Beauty

Jason Reitman brings his "Live Read" series to the Toronto International Film Festival with a table read of Alan Ball's screenplay for "American Beauty," the Oscar-winner that premiered at TIFF in 1999.  The director of "Thank You for Smoking" and "Up in the Air" will announce the cast of the table read via his Twitter account over the next few days leading to the September 6 event.  So far, Reitman has cast Adam Driver from "Girls" as Ricky Fitts (played by Wes Bentley in the film) and Sarah Gadon, from "Cosmopolis," as Angela (Mena Suvari's character).  He announced that Mae Whitman will play Thora Birch's character and actor Nick Kroll from "Community," will read Peter Gallagher's part.  For Lester Burnham, the lead role originally played by Kevin Spacey, Reitman just added Bryan Cranston.  Christina Hendricks is set to play his wife (originally played by Annette Bening), and Woody Harrelson will read the part of his neighbor, Col. Frank Fitts. 

Reitman began his popular "Live Read" program with LACMA in October 2011. The series always sells out. So far the actors reading classic film scripts have included “The Apartment” (Steve Carell and Natalie Portman), “The Princess Bride” (Paul Rudd), “Shampoo” (Bradley Cooper and Kate Hudson), “The Big Lebowski” (Seth Rogen), and “Reservoir Dogs,” read by an all-African American cast with Terrence Howard and Laurence Fishburne. The series will continue with LACMA starting in October of this year.

Tickets for the table read, held at the Ryerson Theatre, are available here.

This article is related to: Toronto International Film Festival, Jason Reitman, Festivals, Sarah Gadon, Adam Driver, Bryan Cranston, Christina Hendricks, Woody Harrelson


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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.