In what will surprise likely no one at all, Sony Pictures Classics has picked up Woody Allen’s next film Magic in the Moonlight, the filmmaker’s forty-fourth feature. A romantic comedy set in the south of France in the early 1920s, the film stars Academy Award winning actor Colin Firth and Emma Stone. This marks the sixth consecutive partnership between the iconoclastic Allen and the distributor, both of which are currently in the 2013 awards circuit for the summer sleeper hit Blue Jasmine, which has earned innumerable critics mentions for its leading lady Cate Blanchett as well as PGA and WGA nominations. Allen is also the recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award at this Sunday’s Golden Globe Awards.
Allen returning to Jazz Age era France may instantly call back to mind his 2011 film Midnight in Paris. That film, which earned Allen his fourth Academy Award for his screenplay (he famously did not attend the ceremony, his custom dating as far back to his first nominations in the 1970s; he’s been nominated for 23 Oscars throughout his career) and became the highest grossing film of his career. The new film revolves around an Englishman recruited to aid in unmasking a crook; as usual plot details are kept at a premium. Marcia Gay Harden (Oscar winner for Pollack), two-time Oscar nominee Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook), Hamish Linklater (The Future) and Eileen Atkins (Gosford Park) co-star.
No release date has been confirmed as of yet, however it’s very likely that Magic in the Moonlight will be unveiled some time this summer. That has been the case for the majority of Allen’s recent films as a counter-programming strategy against all the tentpole assaults that hit cinemas that time of year.