Filmmaker David O. Russell, known for colorful dramas with heart like “American Hustle,” “The Fighter” and “Silver Linings Playbook” has described the aforementioned triad of films as a kind of rebirth. Critically and commercially well received, as well as dominating the awards circuit (25 Oscar nominations between the three pictures), Russell has also marked this as a new period in his filmmaking style and approach. This is his new way forward and its been validated at nearly every turn. But for his next film “Joy,” Russell has suggested he’s switching gears slightly.
While it’s the third collaboration between him and Jennifer Lawrence, his female muse that has starred in ‘Playbook’ and ‘Hustle,’ Russell has suggested he’s going for a different mood.
“It’s a different key of storytelling that feels… it’s a departure,” he told The Playlist last year. “It’s taking risks that we haven’t taken before. This is going to be a very intense emotional and existential look at a woman’s heart and soul as she becomes powerful.”
This mostly bares out in the new trailer for “Joy,” a darker, grounded drama that some sites got a taste of early at WonderCon in the spring and suggested it had few light touches, laughs or quirky characters. Co-written with Annie Mumolo (“Bridesmaids”), “Joy” tells the story of Miracle Mop inventor Joy Mangano, who also struggled as a single mother of three kids before she made it big. The official synopsis:
JOY is the wild story of a family across four generations centered on the girl who becomes the woman who founds a business dynasty and becomes a matriarch in her own right. Betrayal, treachery, the loss of innocence and the scars of love, pave the road in this intense emotional and human comedy about becoming a true boss of family and enterprise facing a world of unforgiving commerce. Allies become adversaries and adversaries become allies, both inside and outside the family, as Joy’s inner life and fierce imagination carry her through the storm she faces.
“What appealed to me was to sort of do my biggest film in scope and kind of epic story, of an unexpected story about a woman’s soul,” Russell told People this week. “I wanted to do an epic, unexpected story about the interior life of one woman’s soul, from the ages of 10 to 40,” he added to EW.
Produced by Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures, the first “Joy” trailer is here and it’s indeed more somber than what we’re used to from Russell and his rejuvenation period. Co-starring Bradley Cooper, Edgar Ramirez, Robert DeNiro, Elisabeth Röhm, Isabella Rossellini, Diane Ladd, and Virginia Madsen, “Joy” lands in theaters Christmas Day via 20th Century Fox (the same day as Fox’s “The Revenant” mind you). Watch the first trailer below and let us know what you think. New photos via [EW/People]