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Sundance 2011: With Paul Giamatti's 'Win Win,' Tom McCarthy looks to score once again

January 21, 2011 |  8:12 pm


As we type this, Tom McCarthy is getting set to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival his third feature as a writer-director, an unusual amalgam of buddy comedy/family drama/high-school sports movie called “Win Win.”

 McCarthy looks to make it 3 for 3 with this new movie, having already scored with critics and the Sundance crowd with “The Station Agent” and “The Visitor” in 2004 and 2008.

 In a piece on the movie in tomorrow’s Times, we look at the unusual methods of the actor-turned-filmmaker, who agonizes intensely over every line in his script, every shot on his set and every cut in the edit room. It pays off in the form of authenticity and nuance, qualities that animate McCarthy’s films. "He makes it look so effortless," said producer Michael London, "because he puts in so much effort."

 The movie, which stars Paul Giamatti as a lawyer and part-time wrestling coach who gets in over his head, comes out in March. By this point, McCarthy not only has shown that his previous films are no fluke, he's demonstrated that he has developed an auteur-like style that's all his own. But don’t tell him that. “I’m so inside it, I’m not sure I see it that way," he said. "Or maybe it will take me 10 more movies to start to feel it.”

--Steven Zeitchik


Photo: 'Win Win.' Credit: Sundance Film Festival