Greg Mottola (the director of Superbad) is set to take on the film adaptation of the impressively titled novel Important Artifacts and Personal Property From the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, Including Books, Street Fashion, and Jewelry as his next project.
The book (which I shall henceforth refer to as Important Artifacts) was written by Leanne Shapton, an art director for the New York Times. In addition to his directorial duties, Mottola will pen the screenplay based off Shapton's work himself.
Important Artifacts is a fictional auction catalog filled with photographs of the various personal items and knick-knacks accumulated during the four-year romance between the 40-something year old photographer Harold Morris and Lenore Doolan, a food columnist in her mid-20s. The book itself is filled with comments and observations from author Shapton about each of the individual objects on display and how they reflect on the couple's changing relationship over time.
That said, expect Mottola's screenplay to use the auction for these "important artifacts" as a framing device-- or something along those lines-- for the main storyline involving Harold and Leonare's relationship.
We reported March of last year that Brad Pitt and Natalie Portman are attached to star in the film version of Important Artifacts, something that looks to still be the case now. Both are the appropriate age for Harold and Leonare-- respectively-- and will bring that extra touch of Hollywood stardom to the pic that should help it garner more publicity than Mottola's last film (the under-seen and in my opinion under-appreciated teen comedy Adventureland).
Important Artifacts sounds like a flick that will bear similarities to last year's indie romantic comedy hit 500 Days of Summer. It will be interesting to see if Mottola constructs his new film in the same non-linear fashion-- not to mention with a similar quirky bent-- that we saw in that show.
Personally, I'm expecting the film's tone will be more on a par with Adventureland or the last 15 minutes of Superbad-- awkward but realistically humorous, more touching that laugh-out-loud hilarious.
Mottola is currently in post-production on Paul, his upcoming comedy starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Shaun of the Dead/Hot Fuzz). That film is still slated for a 2010 release so look for Mottola to start working on Important Artifacts sometime later this year.