Year in Film: Grounded

Up in the Air director Jason Reitman has a good sense of where he's from and where he's headed.

Reitman worries that he may not be making movies fast enough. "Right now, I make a movie every two years, and I'd like it to be every year and a half," he says, noting that, historically speaking, most directors tend to make their best movies early in their careers. "If I have something to say, it's going to happen right now. So, I don't want to make three movies in my thirties. I'd like to make six movies in my thirties." When I ask Reitman where he sees himself ten years from now, he tells me simply that he hopes he's made five more films, that they're all personal and that most of them are good.

Jason Reitman (right) got to make Up in the Air only due to the presence of George Clooney (left) and Juno's robust $231 million worldwide gross.
Dale Robinette Copyright © 2009 DW STUDIOS L.L.C. and COLD SPRING PICTURES
Jason Reitman (right) got to make Up in the Air only due to the presence of George Clooney (left) and Juno's robust $231 million worldwide gross.

Back in the present, Reitman has his sights set squarely on what he hopes will be his next project — an adaptation of To Die For author Joyce Maynard's recent novel, Labor Day, about the relationship between a lonely 13-year-old boy, his single mother and the escaped convict who enters their lives over the titular holiday weekend. "It's just strange and dramatic and romantic," he says. And decidedly not high-concept. "I'm not going to be relying on cute jokes," he adds. "I'm not going to be relying on anything. I'm just going to tell the story."

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