Joaquin Phoenix may replace Jeremy Renner in Scientology film from Paul Thomas Anderson

Posted by: Kristy Sturdivant

What Paul Thomas Anderson’s Scientology-esque film has lost in Jeremy Renner may be saved by Joaquin Phoenix. Currently Phoenix is circling the role of Freddie Sutton, a former alcoholic who is looking for more meaning in his life and is taken under the wing of Lancaster Dodd (to be played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman) who is the leader of The Cause (which is of course based loosely on Scientology). Originally the role of Sutton was going to be played by Jeremy Renner (THE HURT LOCKER and THE TOWN), but currently he’s super busy and in demand so this currently untitled film fell to the wayside. Phoenix is being sought after for the role but this is still in the very early stages and he hasn’t committed yet, although he sounds like a perfect fit for the part. There are still a couple of other major roles that need to be cast including the wife of Dodd, Mary Sue, which was apparently offered to Reese Witherspoon last year (who knows if she’s still interested) and the role of Elizabeth the daughter of Lancaster and Mary Sue. A couple of actresses names have been thrown out including Amanda Seyfriend, Emma Stone and Deborah Ann Woll, but expect that to change as well. We’ll keep you posted when we know more.

Paul Thomas Anderson has another film on the back burner called INHERENT VICE, which had Robert Downey, Jr. loosely attached but that’s still in the early stages as well.

Joaquin Phoenix

Source: Variety

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