Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

TIFF: Focus Acquires Beginners, Starring McGregor and Plummer

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood September 20, 2010 at 3:16AM

After the Toronto press screening of Mike Mills' Beginners last week, Eugene Hernandez and I were debating which distrib should pick it up. And we agreed that Focus Features--which had not acquired anything out of this year's fest--was the best candidate. Sony Pictures Classics and Fox Searchlight were overbooked. And there's a real possibility of a supporting actor nod for Christopher Plummer, who nails the role of an older gay man clinging to life. I had admired Mills' Thumbsucker, so I was not surprised at the little joys to be found in this superbly directed movie.
0
Thompson on Hollywood

After the Toronto press screening of Mike Mills' Beginners last week, Eugene Hernandez and I were debating which distrib should pick it up. And we agreed that Focus Features--which had not acquired anything out of this year's fest--was the best candidate. Sony Pictures Classics and Fox Searchlight were overbooked. And there's a real possibility of a supporting actor nod for Christopher Plummer, who nails the role of an older gay man clinging to life. I had admired Mills' Thumbsucker, so I was not surprised at the little joys to be found in this superbly directed movie.

Ewan McGregor is back on track, after many missteps. He also ably carried Roman Polanski's underappreciated The Ghost Writer. My only caveat is that while you fall for Melanie Laurent (Inglorious Basterds) at the start of Beginners, her role does not deepen as the story progresses. It's Plummer who sticks with you. Focus is taking this film out in 201l. So they may spring Plummer on next year's Oscar race.

Here's indieWIRE.

This article is related to: Studios, Festivals, Universal/Focus Features


E-Mail Updates








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.