As one of the most revered and accomplished filmmakers of his generation, the arrival of a new film by Paul Thomas Anderson is always an event. From his early days of indie cred with the brilliantly cast Hard Eight to repeat Oscar nominations for beloved films such as Boogie Nights, Magnolia and two eventual Oscar wins for 2007’s There Will Be Blood, Anderson has a knack for creating monstrous and engaging worlds rich in both dramatic flair and substance.
There hasn’t been a new project on the horizon for Anderson since 2014’s Inherent Vice – though the filmmaker has busied himself with a musical documentary feature called Junun, as well as directing several music videos for his good friends from the band Radiohead. It’s only been in the past few weeks that details of Anderson’s upcoming film – which may or may not be titled Phantom Thread – have begun to surface and some set photos have been shared.
In keeping with these slight revelations, The Wrap has managed to secure more information about Phantom Thread – specifically a rough outline of its plot, along with news that Lesley Manville (Maleficent) and Vicky Krieps (Colonia) will be joining the cast. At present the film already has found its lead in long-time Paul Thomas Anderson collaborator and multi-Oscar winner Daniel Day-Lewis. Everything we know to date about the film’s plot can be summed up with this most recent reveal from distributor Focus Features:
“The new movie is a drama set in the couture world of 1950s London. The story illuminates the life behind the curtain of an uncompromising dressmaker commissioned by royalty and high society.”
As Focus Features goes on to explain, this latest pairing of P.T. Anderson and Daniel Day-Lewis will serve to “once again explore a distinctive milieu of the 20th century.” It’s been well known ever since the first murmurs of a new P.T. Anderson project began back in the summer that the filmmaker would be taking on both writing and directing duties, but it was just recently confirmed that Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood will be composing the film’s original soundtrack. To date, Greenwood has created music for three of Anderson’s films and was unfortunately denied Oscar eligibility for his superb soundtrack to 2007’s There Will Be Blood.
It will certainly be exciting to see what Paul Thomas Anderson comes up with for his first film in three years, though given the subject matter, Phantom Thread (if that does in fact end up being the title) likely won’t be for everyone. Anderson films like Boogie Nights or There Will Be Blood – arguably his biggest hits – found audiences as a result of their intriguing subject matter. While the fashion industry is no stranger to scandal, what exactly Anderson will be able to dredge up in order to really connect with the average viewer is a sizeable challenge, to say the least.
But of course, finding the allure in the subjects so rarely explored is perhaps one of Paul Thomas Anderson’s biggest strengths as a filmmaker. The true test of a master storyteller is not necessarily the subject matter, but the way in which the story is told. On that front, Paul Thomas Anderson has consistently proven that he possesses the vision required to both immerse and engage his audiences.
Screen Rant will have more details regarding the new Paul Thomas Anderson film as they are made available.
Source: The Wrap