When you make one deeply serious film after the next, a little break in an easygoing comedy probably seems like a good idea. And if you’re looking to direct for the first time, it probably seems like a low-pressure situation. Especially if you know the material. Hence Ed Norton and Keeping the Faith, and now Philip Seymour Hoffman and Jack Goes Boating. In 2007 Hoffman was nominated for the Drama Desk award for his lead role in the off-Broadway production; he lost to Frank Langella’s Nixon.
Based on the play by Bob Glaudini, Jack will star Hoffman and Amy Ryan alongside John Ortiz and Daphne Rubin-Vega, who’ll reprise their stage roles. Variety calls the play “an unconventional romantic comedy about two misfits in New York City laced with cooking classes, swimming lessons and illegal drugs.” In a March ’07 review of the production, the New York Times called the play “immensely likable,” saying “this gentle portrait of pothead losers in love is a reminder of how
engrossing uneventful existences can be in the hands of the right
actors. You’re likely to leave the theater with a contact high from the
ripe pleasure that Mr. Hoffman and his cast mates derive from
portraying everyday eccentrics.” Good enough for me.