The wait for an update on Charlie Kaufman‘s Frank or Francis has been longer than I’d prefer — the last item surrounding it wasn’t even “news,” per se — but, thankfully, a big break has come from Vulture. As they tell us, prior Charlie Kaufman collaborators Kate Winslet and Catherine Keener will be joining the film — a biting, musical satire on Hollywood that’s being led by Steve Carell, Jack Black, Nicolas Cage, and Kevin Kline.
Vulture doesn’t actually give details on their respective roles, but the script contains some strong possibilities: a few love interests for Carell‘s director character, Frank Arder, and Black‘s blogger, Francis Deems, instantly spring to mind; one has a larger amount of screentime and “acting” work to do, but they’d accommodate themselves nicely in these parts. And, lest I forget, there’s also a Romanian waitress who has her thumbs severed to help resuscitate the career of Cage‘s character — he’s known as “The Emcee” on account of of his duties as Oscar host, but is actually Alan Modell, star of the movie series Fat Dad. Any of those are likely to be taken by either of them, but, with this early casting, I’d think that the romantic leads are the big contenders.
You can probably glean from those character descriptions that Frank or Francis is going to be a strange film, but we’ve already told you that this doesn’t even scratch the surface. And, to be completely straight, that’s the most you should go in knowing; Frank or Francis‘ main pleasures stem from the surprise that goes with seeing each new bizarre fragment of Kaufman‘s imagination come to life.
Though the once-proposed start of January is obviously off the table by now, a part of me — one that was honestly, truly worried this would never come together — has been suppressed, even if we have to wait a little longer for the madcap lunacy to play onscreen. But if you complain about the casting of Winslet and Keener in the first place — well, don’t.
Are you happy to hear that Frank or Francis is still going? What do you make of Winslet and Keener’s casting?
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