Today Variety is reporting that Charlie Kaufman’s new film Anomalisa has been picked up for distribution by Paramount Pictures. The stop-motion feature, playing at Fantastic Fest on Sunday, September 27th, concerns a “Willy Loman type" who endeavors to escape his mundane existence by reconnecting with a lost love on a business trip. I suspect that’s about as accurate a description as “Man tries to forget his ex-girlfriend” would be for Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, or describing Adaptation as "screenwriter struggles with script." And folks at TIFF are raving about this film, so I think it's safe to say we’re in for something special. It’s exciting to see big-screen stop-motion refuse to die, at any rate!
Kaufman, described by Variety as “a big draw with cinephiles,” took to Kickstarter to partially fund his new film, which is a collaboration with filmmaker Duke Johnson, produced by Snoot Films (You’re Next, The Guest) and Dan Harmon’s animation studio Starburns Industries. That’s a Fantastic Fest-friendly lineup if I’ve ever seen one.
Paramount will release Anomalisa in New York and Los Angeles on December 20th in order to render it eligible for awards consideration. Should Anomalisa net any Oscar nominations, it will be the highest profile Kickstarter project to do so: with one live-action short exception, every other Oscar-nominated Kickstarter project has been a documentary. (Inocente, a 2013 documentary short, is the only Kickstarter Oscar winner to date.)
Here’s the Kickstarter pitch video for Anomalisa to hold you over until the 27th (or December 30th, depending on your life plans).