Kevin Kline joins Charlie Kaufman’s Frank or Francis; character descriptions revealed

Kevin Kline is set to join Steve Carell, Jack Black and Nicolas Cage in Charlie Kaufman’s directorial follow-up to the brilliant/maddening Synecdoche New York, Variety reports

When we previously reported on the flick (titled Frank or Francis), little was known about the plot besides this logline:

“The film chronicles a volatile back and forth between a film director (Frank) and an online blogger (Francis), who takes delight in berating his cinematic talent.”

The Playlist has gotten their hands on the script, and have shared some intriguing notes (although some could be considered spoilerific):

“Frank Arder (Carell) [is] a pretentious, self-important screenwriter-turned-filmmaker whose feature-film You becomes a sensation in Hollywood after it’s nominated for a record-making 29 Academy Awards … Arder plays every character in the film including women and children and characters of many races including African Americans.”

“Francis Deems (Black) is … a self-important, arrogant film-blog commenter who lives in his parents attic and his scathing critiques of Hollywood have earned him a bit of a following.”

“Alan Modell (Cage) [is] a comedian with a faltering career who is known for his wildly popular, immensely moronic Fat Dad roles.”

Could Kaufman be having a go at himself with the Frank Arder character?

As for Kline, he’ll be playing two roles. The first is Richard Waller; according to The Playlist he is “the brother of filmmaker Jonathan Waller who, in this strange movie universe of a film, directed the hit epic called Hiroshima that fails to win Best Picture”. He also plays Richard’s Head, a “superwiz computer-brain programmed to write a screenplay that mathematically analyzes every successful screenplay in the history of cinema” created by the Waller brothers. Well, alright then!

Kaufman revealed earlier in the year that Frank or Francis would also be a musical of sorts, featuring over 50 songs.

Filming begins in January. Colour us intrigued.

Discuss: Could this be a messy masterpiece?


  1. The 10 most exciting films of 2012 | Quickflix® DVD & Movie Blog - January 4, 2012

    […] honourable mentions: Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained, Bennet Miller’s Foxcatcher, Charlie Kaufman’s Frank or Francis, Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master and Judd Apatow’s This Is Forty. These would take […]

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