David O. Russell Opens His Playbook

He’s been slugged by George Clooney and chewed out by Lily Tomlin, but David O. Russell is somehow still in business. New in the writer-director’s queue is Matthew Quick’s The Silver Linings Playbook. He’s working on it for The Weinstein Company. TWC won’t comment. So is there trouble already?

The 2008 novel sounds like something that would appeal to the quirky Russell of Spanking the Monkey and Flirting With Disaster, rather than the philosophical terrorist of I Heart Huckabees. Pat Peoples has lost his job, his wife, and his mind. He is released from a mental institution into his mother’s care. Possessed of a blinding optimism, Peoples tries to reconcile with his estranged wife and deal with the fact that he’s actually be incarcerated for a longer time than he thinks.

The reality-challenged Peoples desperately tries to remake himself into an ideal husband. His efforts draw him into the world of Tiffany, who is described as “mentally unstable” and stalks him on his daily run. Can this happy-go-lucky man get it together? Whose life will he change in the process? Will he sleep with his mom? (God, we hope not. Unless she’s played by Isabelle Adjani. That would be understandable.)

Russell’s latest project, the Jessica Biel/Jake Gyllenhaal political satire Nailed, also became a major nightmare as its hedge fund financiers collapsed and SAG closed the set. So it’s intriguing to see him take on a project that’s about the beauty of saying “yes” and, as Quick puts it, seeing the clouds before sunset. Although we can’t condone Russell’s on-set behavior, we here at Showers Towers consider ourselves fans. Let’s hope the director really has found his silver lining.

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One Response to “David O. Russell Opens His Playbook”

  1. The Slate: Pacino Stopped at Moscow, Clash of the Luvvies « SquallyShowers Says:

    […] O. Russell would prefer “busy.” A mere week after news broke that he would be directing The Silver Linings Playbook, he’s signed up for Aaron and Sarah. Formerly known as B.F.F., A&S is described as a […]

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