By MAGNOLIA LAFLEUR | Reporter
Palisadian and Academy Award nominee Bradley Cooper will be featured in screenwriter and director Paul Thomas Anderson’s coming-of-age film “Licorice Pizza.”
The story revolves around Gary Valentine—played by Cooper Hoffman—a teenage actor and entrepreneur that, while waiting to have his school picture taken, falls in love with a 20-year-old photographer’s assistant, played by Alana Haim. Set in 1973, the film follows the two as they steer through the ups and downs of new love in the San Fernando Valley.
Cooper dons a beard and hippy clothes as he plays the lead role of Jon Peters, a once hairdresser turned Hollywood film producer and director, who designed the wig that Barbra Streisand wore for the 1974 comedy, “For Pete’s Sake.”
Alongside Cooper, the film boasts a prominent cast with the likes of Tom Waits, John C. Reilly, Maya Rudolph, Benny Safdie, Sean Penn and acting newcomer, Haim, along with the son of the late and critically acclaimed Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, Cooper, who also makes his film acting debut.
This is Academy Award nominee Anderson’s ninth work in the last 25 years out of a succession of celebrated films such as “There Will Be Blood,” “Phantom Thread,” “The Master” and “Magnolia.”
Known for his artistically brooding, psychoanalytical character portrayals, “Licorice Pizza” deviates from this thematic norm in that it’s a more blithesome romantic tale. The film, like most of Anderson’s, takes place in the Valley, and its title, “Licorice Pizza,” is named after a record store chain that was a staple in Southern California.
“I love the way it unfolds,” Anderson told Variety. “You meet these two people. You have them fall in love and get to see their relationship blossom, and there are various episodes that challenge them in different ways. I didn’t overdesign it. I just got lucky.”
Anderson will be reunited for the fifth time with Academy Award-nominated composer Johnny Greenwood. The film is produced by Sara Murphy, Anderson and Adam Somner.
The film is scheduled for limited release in the U.S. on November 26, and then worldwide December 25.
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