Though former-“SNL” star and Oscar-nominated “Bridesmaids” writer Kristen Wiig is known more for her comedic chops, her recent turn to indies (“Girl Most Likely,” “The Skeleton Twins”) shows there may be a more serious side to the lovable comedienne.
Here’s the trailer for her first bona fide dramatic film “Hateship Loveship,” directed Liza Johnson and adapted by screenwriter Mark Poirier from the elegant short story out of celebrated Canadian author Alice Munro’s 2001 collection “Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage.” IFC will release the film in select theaters on April 11.
The film centers on shy Johanna (Wiig), a housekeeper hired to care for an ailing man (Nick Nolte) and his granddaughter Sabitha (Hailee Steinfeld), who harbors wounds from her mother’s death and resents her drug addict father (Guy Pearce). Sabitha fosters a bond between Johanna and her father through a series of forged correspondences, unaware of the consequences that will bring to light Johanna’s own faded hopes and dreams.
Focusing on the interiority of her characters over plot, Munro’s restrained, highly literate short stories are a tough sell onscreen. But writer/director Sarah Polley pulled it off in 2006 with her debut feature, the tender Alzheimer’s drama “Away from Her,” from Munro’s “The Bear Came Over the Mountain.”
Early TIFF reviews for “Hateship” are mixed, but promising. And it’ll be nice to see Steinfeld, who’s kept fairly quiet since her 2010 Oscar-nominated performance in “True Grit,” but has a surfeit of roles coming up.