Mississippi Grind

TRAILER: New Orleans-Shot ‘Mississippi Grind’

by Caitlin Brimer on July 23, 2015

1437577639-1401x788-0000515997-1-mississippigrind-still1-unknownMonths after Mississippi Grind’s premiere at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, the first official trailer for the road trip drama by the writer-director duo Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck (Half Nelson, It’s Kind of A Funny Story) has been released.

Emmy-nominated Australian actor Ben Mendelsohn (Bloodline) stars as Gerry, a desperate gambler looking for any place to put his hope. He latches on to the young, charming and slightly sketchy poker player Curtis, played by Ryan Reynolds, who has a cool indifference about winning.

In order to pay Gerry’s debts, and perhaps curb his self-destructive habits, the two go on a road trip from Iowa to New Orleans, making several stops along the way to confront their past. While road trip movies are well worn territory, Mississippi Grind focuses mostly on the characters. The hot streak of an enigmatic Reynolds stands in contrast to the habitual failures of Mendelsohn, who never turns in a bad performance. As Gerry says, “Some guys are born to lose.”

For Reynolds, this film will be his fourth major New Orleans area production, following after Self/less, which premiered earlier this month, Green Lantern in 2011, and Waiting… in 2005.

Mississippi Grind also features a great cast that includes Sienna Miller, Analeigh Tipton, Alfre Woodard and Robin Weigert.

From A24, this dramatic road trip will debut on DirectTV August 13 and will open in theaters on September 25.

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ZIPPER

After announcing its 2015 competition lineup a few days ago, the Sundance Film Festival has revealed more of the films set to screen, including films premiering out of competition and some highly anticipated documentaries. Among them are two films shot in Louisiana, Zipper and Mississippi Grind.

Directed by Mora Stephens from a script she co-wrote with Joel Viertel, Zipper stars Patrick Wilson as a federal prosecutor with a bright future in politics just on the horizon. Among the films producers are The Butler producer R. Bryan Wright and Amy Mitchell-Smith. Mississippi Grind was shot partially in New Orleans and follows an aging professional poker player (Ben Mendelsohn) who takes an up-and-comer played by Ryan Reynolds under his wing on a road trip. That film is directed by the writer/direct team of Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden.

Here’s the full list of additions to Sundance 2015:

PREMIERES
A showcase of world premieres of some of the most highly anticipated narrative films of the coming year.

Zipper / U.S.A. (Director: Mora Stephens, Screenwriters: Mora Stephens, Joel Viertel) — Sam Ellis is a man on the rise — a hot-shot federal prosecutor on the cusp of a bright political future. But what was meant to be a one-time experience with an escort turns into a growing addiction — a new demon threatening to destroy his life, family, and career. Cast: Patrick Wilson, Lena Headey, Richard Dreyfuss, Ray Winstone, John Cho, Dianna Agron.

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Mississippi Grind / U.S.A. (Directors and screenwriters: Ryan Fleck, Anna Boden) — Gerry is a talented poker player whose habit is getting the best of him. He convinces younger player Curtis to join him on a road trip, and they begin gambling their way towards a high-stakes game in New Orleans. During their journey, true motivations are revealed, and the two bond. Cast: Ryan Reynolds, Ben Mendelsohn, Sienna Miller, Analeigh Tipton, Alfre Woodard, Robin Weigert.

Brooklyn / United Kingdom (Director: John Crowley, Screenwriter: Nick Hornby, based on the book by Colm Tóibín) — 1950s Ireland: Eilis must confront a terrible dilemma — a heartbreaking choice between two men and two countries, between duty and true love. Cast: Saoirse Ronan, Domhnall Gleeson, Emory Cohen, Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent.

Digging for Fire / U.S.A. (Director: Joe Swanberg, Screenwriters: Jake Johnson, Joe Swanberg) — The discovery of a bone and a gun sends a husband and wife on separate adventures over the course of a weekend. Cast: Jake Johnson, Rosemarie Dewitt, Orlando Bloom, Brie Larson, Sam Rockwell, Anna Kendrick.

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Don Verdean / U.S.A. (Director: Jared Hess, Screenwriters: Jared Hess, Jerusha Hess) — Biblical archaeologist Don Verdean is hired by a local church pastor to find faith-promoting relics in the Holy Land. But after a fruitless expedition he is forced to get creative in this comedy of faith and fraud. Cast: Sam Rockwell, Jemaine Clement, Amy Ryan, Danny McBride, Leslie Bibb, Will Forte.

End of the Tour / U.S.A. (Director: James Ponsoldt, Screenwriter: Donald Margulies) — This story of the five-day 1996 interview betweenRolling Stone reporter David Lipsky and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace explores the tenuous yet intense relationship that develops between journalist and subject. The two men bob and weave, sharing laughs and also concealing and revealing their hidden vulnerabilities.Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Jason Segel, Anna Chlumsky, Joan Cusack, Mamie Gummer, Ron Livingston.

Experimenter / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Michael Almereyda) — Experimenter is based on the true story of famed social psychologist Stanley Milgram, who in 1961 conducted a series of radical behavior experiments that tested ordinary humans’ willingness to obey authority by using electric shock. We follow Milgram from meeting his wife through his controversial experiments that sparked public outcry. Cast: Peter Sarsgaard, Winona Ryder, Jim Gaffigan, Kellan Lutz, Taryn Manning, John Leguizamo.

Grandma / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Paul Weitz) — Self-described misanthrope Elle Reid has her protective bubble burst when her 18-year-old granddaughter, Sage, shows up needing help. The two of them go on a day-long journey that causes Elle to come to terms with her past and Sage to confront her future. Cast: Lily Tomlin, Julia Garner, Marcia Gay Harden, Judy Greer, Laverne Cox, Sam Elliott.

I Am Michael / U.S.A. (Director: Justin Kelly, Screenwriters: Justin Kelly, Stacey Miller) — The controversial true story of a gay activist who rejects his homosexuality and becomes a Christian pastor. Cast: James Franco, Zachary Quinto, Emma Roberts.

I’ll See You in My Dreams / U.S.A. (Director: Brett Haley, Screenwriters: Brett Haley, Marc Basch) — A sudden loss disrupts Carol’s orderly life, propelling her into the dating world for the first time in 20 years. Finally living in the present tense, she finds herself swept up in not one, but two unexpected relationships that challenge her assumptions about what it means to grow old. Cast: Blythe Danner, Martin Starr, Sam Elliott, Malin Akerman, June Squibb, Rhea Perlman.

Last Days in the Desert / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Rodrigo Garcia) — Ewan McGregor is Jesus — and the Devil — in an imagined chapter from his 40 days of fasting and praying in the desert. On his way out of the wilderness, Jesus struggles with the Devil over the fate of a family in crisis, setting himself up for a dramatic test. Cast: Ewan McGregor, Ciarán Hinds, Ayelet Zurer, Tye Sheridan.

Lila & Eve / U.S.A. (Director: Charles Stone III, Screenwriter: Patrick Gilfillan) — Lila, a grief-stricken mother reeling from her son’s murder, attends a support group where she meets Eve, who urges her to take matters into her own hands to track down her son’s killers. They soon embark on a journey of revenge, but also recovery. Cast: Viola Davis, Jennifer Lopez, Shea Whigham, Julius Tennon, Ron Caldwell, Aml Ameen.

Mistress America / U.S.A. (Director: Noah Baumbach, Screenwriters: Noah Baumbach, Greta Gerwig) — Tracy, a lonely college freshman in New York, is rescued from her solitude by her soon-to-be stepsister Brooke, an adventurous gal about town who entangles her in alluringly mad schemes. Mistress America is a comedy about dream-chasing, score-settling, makeshift families, and cat-stealing. Cast: Greta Gerwig, Lola Kirke.

Seoul Searching / U.S.A., Korea (Director and screenwriter: Benson Lee) — Seoul Searching is a comedy set in the ’80s about a group of foreign-born Korean teenagers who meet at a Seoul summer camp to learn what it means to be Korean. The three boys, from the U.S., Mexico, and Germany, then meet three girls who rock their world. Cast: Justin Chon, Jessika Van, In-pyo Cha, Teo Yoo, Esteban Ahn, Byul Kang.

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Sleeping With Other People / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Leslye Headland) — Jake and Lainey impulsively lose their virginity to each other in college. When their paths cross twelve years later in NYC, they realize they both have become serial cheaters. Bonding over their chronic infidelity, they form a platonic friendship to support each other in their quests for healthy romantic relationships. Cast: Jason Sudeikis, Alison Brie, Adam Scott, Amanda Peet, Jason Mantzoukas, Natasha Lyonne.

Ten Thousand Saints / U.S.A. (Directors: Robert Pulcini, Shari Springer Berman, Screenwriters: Shari Springer Berman, Robert Pulcini) — Based on the acclaimed novel, Ten Thousand Saints follows three lost kids and their equally lost parents as they come of age in New York’s East Village in the era of CBGB, yuppies, and the tinderbox of gentrification that exploded into the Tompkins Square Park Riot of 1988. Cast: Ethan Hawke, Asa Butterfield, Emily Mortimer, Julianne Nicholson, Hailee Steinfeld, Emile Hirsch.

There’s more!

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Sienna Miller joins the cast of ‘Mississippi Grind’

by Wyatt Gassen on November 13, 2013

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English actress Sienna Miller has joined the cast of the upcoming dramady Mississippi Grind. Starring alongside Miller are Ryan Reynolds, whose role was originally cast to Jake Gyllenhaal, and The Dark Knight Rises‘ star Ben Mandelsohn, who plays a down-on-his-luck gambling addict who befriends a charismatic poker player. The two set out on a road trip in hopes of catching some luck and winning back some of they money they lost to gambling habits.

Produced by Electric City and Sycamore Entertainment, both of which are coming off of other major projects like Place Beyond the Pines and The Way Way Back, Mississippi Grind is being directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. Production is set to begin in New Orleans in January.

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