Category: American Pastoral

Ewan McGregor talks American Pastoral at TIFF

Tonight is the premiere of American Pastoral at the Toronto International Film Festival and here’s a quick interview with Ewan about the movie:

American Pastoral to premiere at TIFF

Ewan McGregor’s direction debut will be presented at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.

The movie is set for showing on Friday, September 9th, Saturday, September 10th and Thursday, September 15th.

Via TIFF Website:

Ewan McGregor makes his directing debut and stars alongside Oscar winner Jennifer Connelly and Dakota Fanning in this ambitious adaptation of Philip Roth’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel, about a “perfect” American family that is torn apart by the social and political upheavals of the 1960s.

Based on Philip Roth’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel, Ewan McGregor’s feature directorial debut transports us to a time of great upheaval and its lacerating effect on a seemingly ideal American family. With McGregor in the role of Seymour “Swede” Levov and a powerhouse cast that includes Academy Award winner Jennifer Connelly, David Strathairn, Dakota Fanning, Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black), and Molly Parker (also appearing at the Festival in Weirdos), American Pastoral conjures a cataclysmic clash of perspectives.

The film’s elegant framing device introduces Seymour’s former classmate, and Roth’s inveterate alter ego, Nathan Zuckerman (Strathairn). At a high-school reunion, Zuckerman catches up with Seymour’s brother, Jerry (Rupert Evans), and discovers the remarkable tale of his old friend. A successful businessman with a happy family, Seymour’s life begins to slide off the rails when his teenaged daughter, Merry (Fanning, who also appears at this year’s Festival in Brimstone), becomes radicalized in reaction to the war in Vietnam. Soon she rejects her family’s comfortable existence for a secret life of violent protest.

Through a combination of Jerry’s disclosures and Zuckerman’s own recollections of his fleeting encounters with Seymour, a complex portrait is gradually constructed, one that speaks to the experience of not simply one man, but rather of an entire generation struggling to comprehend the dissolution of a dream.

McGregor and screenwriter John Romano (The Lincoln Lawyer) vividly recreate an era of trauma and transformation, from the tumult of ’68 through to the outrage over Watergate. As Seymour, McGregor becomes a living container for that trauma, a man for whom the collapse of a value system manifests as a fatal sickness.

Arriving as the world grapples with a new period of chaos, American Pastoral offers a bold vision of history that doubles as a mirror to the present.

Here’s the trailer:

Ewan McGregor’s ‘American Pastoral’ to Open Hamburg Film Festival

Ewan McGregor’s ‘American Pastoral’ to Open Hamburg Film Festival

American Pastoral is headed for Hamburg Film Festival:

McGregor’s directorial debut, an adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Philip Roth, co-stars Jennifer Connelly and Dakota Fanning.

Ewan McGregor’s directorial debut, American Pastoral, will open the 24th Hamburg International Film Festival on Sept. 29th.

McGregor stars in the drama, based on Philip Roth’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, as Seymour “Swede” Levov, a former star athlete now living the suburban dream in 1960s America. But his idyllic life is torn apart as the era’s social upheaval reaches his own family and his daughter Merry (Dakota Fanning) joins a militant group. The resulting tragedy mirrors the impact of the decade on the entire country.
Jennifer Connelly co-stars as Levov’s wife Dawn.

McGregor and Connelly will attend Hamburg to present the film.

American Pastoral will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. The Lakeshore Entertainment production opens domestically Oct. 21 via Lionsgate.


American Pastoral First Trailer

The first trailer for American Pastoral, Ewan’s directorial debut, is out. Based on the novel by Philip Roth, the movie is set for release in October.

Set in postwar America, a man watches his seemingly perfect life fall apart as his daughter’s new political affiliation threatens to destroy their family.

Ewan McGregor’s ‘American Pastoral’ Gets October Release

Lionsgate has set an awards-season date of Oct. 21 for a limited release of its drama “American Pastoral,” with Ewan McGregor starring and making his feature directorial debut.

The studio will expand the run a week later. The cast includes Uzo Aduba, David Strathairn, Jennifer Connelly, Rupert Evans, Peter Riegert and Dakota Fanning.

Lakeshore toppers Tom Rosenberg and Gary Lucchesi are producing along with Andre Lamal. John Romano adopted Philip Roth’s novel, which was published in 1997.

“American Pastoral” follows Seymour “Swede” Levov, a legendary high school athlete, who grows up to marry a former beauty queen and inherits his father’s business. His seemingly perfect life shatters when his daughter rebels by committing a deadly act of terrorism during the Vietnam War.

The book, published in 1997, is the first novel in Roth’s American postwar trilogy, followed by “I Married a Communist” and “The Human Stain.” Lakeshore has produced two other Roth adaptations — 2003’s “The Human Stain,” starring Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman, and 2008’s “Elegy,” starring Penelope Cruz and Ben Kingsley.

Roth won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for the novel. Lakeshore began working on a movie version in 2003 with Phillip Noyce directing. Fisher Stevens was attached to direct in 2012 before Lakeshore selected McGregor in early 2015.

Connelly plays the spouse of McGregor’s character and Fanning plays his beloved teenage daughter. Evans plays his brother.


Ewan McGregor to Make Directorial Debut with ‘American Pastoral’

Ewan McGregor will make his directorial feature film debut in Lakeshore Entertainment’s “American Pastoral” in addition to starring with Jennifer Connelly and Dakota Fanning.

The long-in-development project is based on the Pulitzer Prize winning novel written by Philip Roth. Philip Noyce was previously attached to direct.

“Ewan’s talent goes far beyond his on-screen work and we’re excited to be working with a director who is as passionate as we are about telling the story of ‘American Pastoral,’” Lakeshore CEO Tom Rosenberg said.

“It’s a great privilege to be working with Lakeshore on Phillip Roth’s astounding novel ‘American Pastoral,’” McGregor said. “I’ve wanted to direct for years and wanted to wait until I found a story that I ‘had’ to tell and in this script I knew I had found that story.”

The screenplay was written by John Romano with filming scheduled for September in Pittsburgh, Pa. Producers aer Rosenberg and Gary Lucchesi.

The story follows Seymour “Swede” Levov, a legendary high school athlete, who grows up to marry a former beauty queen and inherits his father’s business. His perfect life shatters when his daughter rebels by becoming a revolutionary and committing a deadly act of political terrorism during the Vietnam War.


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