by: Madison Barnes
It’s recently been confirmed that Ad Hominem is producing the Jay Baruchel film BURNOUT, a darkly comic noir involving a mysterious suicide and the teens who try discover what really happened. Olivia Thirlby and Shea Whigham are also attached to star, and Michael Rochford is directing from his personally-penned script.
Baruchel is on the rise lately, with an impressive list of credits including appearances in “RoboCop,” “This is the End,” “Night at the Museum,” “How to Train Your Dragon,” and “She’s Out of My League.” He’s also taken on more dramatic roles in “Cosmopolis,” “Million Dollar Baby,” and “Almost Famous.” He continues to show off his versatility by choosing this film, which seems to be an unsettling combinations of film genres, straddling the line between modern day film noir and high school comedy.
Thirlby could help stabilize the project, as she can jump between comedy and drama with ease. Her well- known credits include “Juno,” “No Strings Attached” and the recent graphic novel adaptation of “Dredd.” Shea Whigham’s involvement also gives the project weight, as his recent successes in “Wolf of Wall Street,” “American Hustle,” “Silver Linings Playbook,” and “The Lincoln Lawyer,” demand serious attention.
Whatever this film ends up becoming (hopefully a successful mash up of differing concepts) it’s sure to be interesting. It vaguely reminds me of the high school noir “Brick” with Joseph Gordon Levitt. He too was trying to expose corruption in a suburban high school, and the film was noteworthy for its successful combination of modern cinema with classic film noir. Either way, the Tracking Board will keep you updated as more details arise.