According to TMZ, Joaquin Phoenix has signed on to star in the screen version of Reservation Road, the Terry George-directed adaptation of John Burnham Schwartz's second novel. The novel is one of those incredibly intense, wrenching stories that sounds tailor-made for Oscar nominated performances: It's about a college professor whose 10-year-old son is killed in a hit-and-run accidental, who then goes on a "desperate search" for the driver of the car. In the other corner is the driver, a self-loathing, "deeply damaged man who's torn between turning himself in for the crime and saving his own hide," clear Oscar bait in his own right. Not having read the book (yes, I'll soon be adding it to the massive "writing for Cinematical made me buy these" pile on my bedside table), I don't know the ages of the characters and can't guess which role Phoenix will play. He's so damn good at suffering that I'm sure he could be incredibly effective in either part -- anyone familiar with the novel want to weigh in and tell us which one he's a better fit for?

Though George has been limited to writing (The Waterhorse, American Gangster) since directing Hotel Rwanda and is surely eager to get going on this one, Phoenix is currently filming We Own the Night, so it'll be a while before production begins. Though no studio is yet attached to the project, it has secured independent financing and will be shopped after filming begins, and the scent of Oscar is officially in the air.
categories Movies, Cinematical