by Lucy Leitner
Matt Damon and Jim from The Office‘s anti-fracking movie Promised Land is apparently set for a winter release, leading to speculation that it’s already poised for an Oscar run. Of course, that’s what experts said about this year’s Penguins and Lord Stanley’s glorious Cup (too soon?). However, it is Pittsburgh that looks to be turning in an award-winning performance as a small town hit hard by the troubled economy. After having recently played Gotham City and somewhere awesome where Tom Cruise performs stunts, the ‘Burgh is now being stripped of the glamour by director Gus Van Sant, producer Chris Moore, and screenwriters Damon, Dave Eggers, and Jim. If this role were given to its chameleon-like human equivalent Daniel Day-Lewis, he would win an Oscar. And yes, we at Hollyburgh find it feasible that Day-Lewis would attempt to portray a city.
Damon and Monessen native Frances McDormand play corporate salespeople looking to get the down-on-their-luck townspeople to grant them drilling rights on their properties. They are met with resistance in the form of a teacher (Hal Holbrook) and a grassroots activist (Jim from The Office and, no, I never plan on referring to him by his actual name), and something, though probably not hilarity (though there is supposed to be a bit of humor), ensues.
“Matt and I wanted to write a story about American identity. In all of today’s political and economic rhetoric, I feel people often lose sight of the deeper, core principles of what defines us as a country,” Jim said of the upcoming film.
Though the meaning is nice, we in Pittsburgh are concerned with we (or us) in Pittsburgh.
The illustrious Steel City has turned in Golden Globe-worthy performances as a mob-run town with vampires on the loose (Innocent Blood), a trendy metropolis with abundant outdoor dining (She’s Out of My League), and Detroit (RoboCop), but this is the one that should really break through. Next year, it will appear as Margaret Thatcher in Iron Lady 2 in which it will fight Mickey Rourke.