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Nouveau Western: Audiard Teams with John C. Reilly for “The Sisters Brothers”

Not one to waste too much time in development between projects (he is just as prolific as the Dardennes with a film output of a feature every three years), Jacques Audiard spilled some Far West beans on what would be his eighth directorial outing: his first English language project, his first western and one starring John C. Reilly. It’s been a signature, “auteur friendly” kind of year for Reilly with parts in Sundance preemed Entertainment and Cannes trio Tale of Tales, The Lobster and Thomas Bidegain’s Les Cowboys (see trailer below). Bidegain the scribe on Audiard’s films since 2009’s Un prophète undoubtably became a creative facilitator of sorts, as THR reports (via radio station RTL) that Reilly and Palme d’Or winner Audiard will team on The Sisters Brothers. Reilly grabbed this novel’s film rights back in 2011. The French filmmaker is currently working on a rewrite.

Gist: Based on Patrick deWitt’s novel, the National Post call it a darkly comic, Western-inspired story that takes place in Oregon and California in 1851. The narrator Eli Sisters and his brother Charlie Sisters are assassins sent to kill Hermann Kermit Warm, an ingenious and likable man, who is accused of stealing from the Sisters’ fearsome boss, the Commodore.

Worth Noting: Palme D’Or winner Dheepan will be launched at TIFF and the NYFF this fall.

Do We Care?: Remarkably, the book review also mention “the series of adventures depicted resemble the narrative form of a picaresque novel….dangerously close to a film treatment”. Circle this as a 2017 Cannes offering if production begins next year.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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