The pic is based on the memoir by John Callahan (Joaquin Phoenix), who became paralyzed after a car accident at age 21 and turned to drawing as a form of therapy. Jonah Hill and Jack Black also star. It’s one of two Amazon movies the three-time Oscar nominee has next year in addition to the April crime noir You Were Never Really Here. It’s also Phoenix’s second in the spring with Rooney Mara, their biblical pic Mary Magdalene is scheduled to open on March 30.
Van Sant adapted, has screenplay credit and, separately, story credits with Jack Gibson & William Andrew Eatman. Charles-Marie Anthonioz, Mourad Belkeddar, Steve Golin, Nicolas Lhermitte are producing.
May 11 is Mother’s Day weekend. The only other wide releases on that day are Melissa McCarthy comedy Life of the Party from Warner Bros/New Line and Annapurna’s Richard Linklater dramedy Where’d You Go, Bernadette starring Cate Blanchett, Kristen Wiig and Judy Greer.