Information about Wes Anderson’s new film has slowly trickled out over the past six months, often misinformation, but hey, it sure helped pass the time, didn’t it? Little has been known beyond the title, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and its sprawling cast, which includes the usual suspects (Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzmann, Owen Wilson) and Edward Norton, Ralph Fiennes, Tilda Swinton, Jude Law, Adrien Brody, Harvey Keitel, Saoirse Ronan, F Murray Abraham, and others.
Aside from the revelation last November that the film “mostly takes place about 85 years ago,” obsessives have been left to speculate about everything else, mostly that there’s a hotel in Budapest, and it’s grand. And probably quirky.
But yesterday Screen Daily reported that Fox Searchlight (which also distributed Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox and The Darjeeling Limited) has acquired worldwide rights to the film, and included this plot nugget:
The Grand Budapest Hotel tells of a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars and his friendship with a young employee who becomes his trusted protégé.
The story involves the theft and recovery of a priceless Renaissance painting, the battle for an enormous family fortune and the slow and then sudden upheavals that transformed Europe during the first half of the 20th century.
So a mentoring relationship between an older man and a boy (Rushmore), a caper (Bottle Rocket, The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou, Fantastic Mr. Fox), a family in upheaval (The Royal Tenenbaums)…pet themes for Anderson, all of them. Add the backdrop of war and two different time periods, as Indiewire reported, and it should all fit within Anderson’s wheelhouse.
Production for The Grand Budapest has apparently already wrapped in the German city of Görlitz (the country’s easternmost city, located right on the border with Poland and just north of the Czech Republic), which is apparently standing in for Budapest. Prepare your dismissive “Obviously that was shot in Saxony, not Pest county. Where’s the Danube?” comments accordingly. The film is due out some time next year. [Via Indiewire]