Paul Thomas Anderson’s next movie is about high school in the ’70s

Filming is set to begin early next year

New film 2020 high school student Paul Thomas Anderson
Paul Thomas Anderson

    Paul Thomas Anderson is working on a new movie. The as-yet-untitled feature takes place in the ’70s and follows a young high school student who also works as a professional actor. Shooting will begin in early 2020, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

    PTA is set to write, direct, and produce the movie through his Ghoulardi Film Company banner. We know it’s definitely happening soon because his name is listed on the California Film Commission’s list of 13 films shooting in the state next year. Allegedly, casting is already underway for the “multitude of roles” needed, which suggests there’s either a star-heavy ensemble or a series of prominent intersecting storylines.

    Does PTA see a bit of himself in the lead of this film? It’s hard not to think so considering he’s setting it in the San Fernando Valley, where he grew up. For the non-California folks, the San Fernando Valley is the northern stretch of Los Angeles that includes neighborhoods like Sherman Oaks, Encino, and Tarzana. PTA loves the region so much that he filmed Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and Punch-Drunk Love there.


    (Read: Ranking Every Paul Thomas Anderson Movie from Worst to Best)

    This new movie will be the first from PTA since his excellent 2017 period drama Phantom Thread. It was a standout film for multiple reasons: Daniel Day-Lewis’ memorable role and his last before retiring from acting, a breakthrough performance by Vicky Krieps, and a gorgeous score by Jonny Greenwood that earned him his first-ever Oscar nomination.

    Recently, PTA has been busy as ever directing music-related projects, including the visual accompaniment to Thom Yorke’s ANIMA, as well as music videos for HAIM singles “Now I’m in It” and “Summer Girl”. Before that, he directed the much-hyped Adam Sandler comedy special 100% Fresh, which aired exclusively on Netflix. It’s about time the fella gets to work on his own projects again.

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