Movies: Stoner; Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet

Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea) will star in Stoner, based on the classic novel by John Williams, Variety reported. Joe Wright is directing Andrew Bovell's adaptation. Jason Blum's Blumhouse Productions is producing with Charles S. Cohen (CMG) and Daniel Battsek (Film4). Ethan Hawke will be an executive producer.

"Because the novel is so beautiful but not well-known, fans of Stoner feel like they're in a secret club. I'm so excited that Casey, Joe and Andrew have come aboard to help expand this club's membership," said Blum, who optioned the book in 2011. "This quintessentially American work is being brought to the screen by a terrific international team and we're confident their combined perspectives will add rich layers to this moving story."


Jamie Ford's bestselling debut novel Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is being developed into a film, with George Takei as executive producer, Deadline reported. Producer Diane Quon acquired the film rights, and Joseph Craig of StemEnt is also producing. Production is expected to begin next year.

"The book tells an intimate love story that is, at once, poignant and sweeping with historic magnitude told against the backdrop of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II," said Takei. "I was captivated by Jamie Ford's novel when I first read it and visualized a compelling film in my mind's eye. I saw the drama of enduring love despite governmental racism, the passage of time and the vicissitude of life. What a wonderful film it would make. Now we are beginning the exciting adventure of making it happen."

Ford, who is co-writing the screenplay, said, "The number one question I get from fans from all around the world is--will there be a film? I'm delighted to say yes because for years I said no to filmmakers who wanted to change too many things about the story (like the ethnicity of my main character). With this team, I'm confident that fans will get a satisfying film that remains true to the spirit of the book."

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