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Wickedly Talented Jeff Nichols' MUD: Witherspoon, McConaughey, Shannon, Shepard, Sheridan & More

by Sophia Savage
September 27, 2011 6:00 AM
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Thompson on Hollywood


In our interview with Michael Shannon he mentioned a possible cameo in Jeff Nichols' MUD, the third feature from the writer-director, whose first two films, Shotgun Stories and Take Shelter, star Shannon. "Wickedly talented," is how Shannon describes Nichols; "A throwback to the seventies [directors]…one of those guys who just kicks ass."

Shannon, as well as Sam Shepard, Sarah Paulson, Ray McKinnon, Joe Don Baker and Paul Sparks, are now officially on board for MUD, joining stars Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon and Tye Sheridan (The Tree of Life). Filming begins today in Nichols' home state of Arkansas. More details below. Sarah Green, Lisa Maria Falcone (Everest Entertainment) and Aaron Ryder (FilmNation) are producing, with Glen Basner (FilmNation) as exec-producer.

The coming-of-age drama centers on two fourteen-year-old Arkansas boys who encounter a mysterious fugitive (McConaughey) hiding on an island in the Mississippi. The teens decide to help the man evade capture and reconnect with his lost lady (Witherspoon). Sure enough, she appears, pursued by hunters (Baker and Sparks). Shannon plays one boy's uncle and Paulson and McKinnon the other boy's parents.

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