While it took Alexander Payne seven years between his smash hit “Sideways” and last year’s very successful “The Descendants,” the good news for fans is that the director is moving right along to his next movie. “Nebraska” has been brewing for a while, and was finally officially greenlit last month, with Payne nabbing Bruce Dern and Will Forte as the two leads in his low budget, $13 million black and white film. And with pre-production well underway, a few more names have come on aboard.
“Breaking Bad” and “Mr. Show” star Bob Odenkirk and the legendary Stacy Keach have joined the film, with June Squibb (who appeared in “About Schmidt“) being sought for a role. The story follow an aging, booze-addled father (Dern) who makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son (Forte) in order to claim a million dollar Publisher’s Clearing House sweepstakes prize. Odenkirk would play Forte’s older brother, with Keach as an old colleague of Dern’s. If Squibb signs on, she’ll play the latter’s wife.
Production will take place in Nebraska, with filming to kick off on October 15th. Until then location scouting and casting continues, with Payne looking to use locals to fill out smaller roles and be extras on the film. “All I’m doing now is locations and casting — harvesting the items to put in front of the camera — and having a lot of fun,” Payne said.