Paul Thomas Anderson’s Scientology movie (previously titled The Master, now untitled) will probably court a fair amount of controversy. And who better than Joaquin Phoenix to be at the forefront of that controversy, since he himself has never shamelessly provoked controversy in order to attract attention to himself.
Phoenix is joining Philip Seymour Hoffman in the titular role, and the movie, which is still being funded by Megan Ellison, starts shooting in June. By the way, Anderson has made some pretty drastic changed to the script (including the aforementioned title change) – here’s a new plot synopsis:
“Hoffman stars as a man who returns after witnessing the horrors of WWII and tries to rediscover who he is in post-war America. He creates a belief system, something that catches on with other lost souls.”
So it looks like the Scientology influence is still there, but maybe it’s been downplayed slightly? I guess we’ll have to wait and see to find out. Hail Xenu! (Deadline)