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Kantemir Balagov & Ari Aster Team For Drama ‘Butterfly Jam’

Dec 8, 2022

There’s good and bad news in the world of HBO‘s big-budgeted series adaptation of the acclaimed Naughty Dog post-apocalypse video game “The Last of Us.” Let’s start with the good news, after releasing a series of teasers and a trailer, HBO finally has a premiere date for the show. The nine-episode first season of the original drama series will debut Sunday, January 15 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO and will be available to stream in 4K on HBO Max. Considering some fans thought this big blockbuster series might be saved for the summer, this is good news for the impatient.
But there’s a coincidental update that’s also a big bummer. In a report from The Hollywood Reporter about acclaimed Russian filmmaker Kantemir Balagov, who won major plaudits at Cannes for his 2019 film “Beanpole,” and a new project he’s attached to, the filmmaker revealed on Twitter that he is no longer involved in “The Last Of Us,” and hasn’t been for a while.
“I left the [‘The Last of Us’] project more than a year ago and have nothing to do with it. I wish only the best to the show and the people,” he said. Balagov received the Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Director and FIPRESCI prize for “Beanpole” in 2019, so when he was first announced as one of the major director of “The Last Of Us” and the filmmaker directing the pilot, enthusiasm went through the roof.
THR says Bagalov left over “creative differences.” “The Last of Us” is being showrun by screenwriter/filmmaker Craig Mazin, who received major acclaim with his 2019 HBO series, “Chernobyl.” The series received nineteen nominations at the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards and won for Outstanding Limited Series, Outstanding Directing, and Outstanding Writing.
READ MORE: ‘Dream Scenario’: Nicolas Cage Teaming Up With Ari Aster For A New A24 Comedy
The silver lining of it all is that Balagov, has another project in the works, an English-language debut feature called “Butterfly Jam.” A family drama set in New Jersey, “Butterfly Jam” takes place in a tight-knit New Jersey community of Kabardian immigrants. It explores “a complicated relationship between a father and son, in which the son imbues his father with qualities he doesn’t actually possess.”
The project has caught the interest of filmmaker Ari Aster (“Midsommar,” “Hereditary”), who will produce the film via his production company Square Peg Partners alongside Lars Knudsen and Alexander Rodnyansky’s AR Content. Aster recently teamed with Oscar-winner Joaquin Phoenix (“Joker“) for his next directorial effort, “Disappointment Blvd.”
No “Butterfly Jam” cast has been revealed yet, so we’ll have to wait for those announcements in the future. But certainly, a collaboration with Aster and Balagov could yield some fascinating casting possibilities in the near future.
Three important things from this news:
⁃ I feel happy to work with Alexander, Ari, and Lars
⁃ The story has changed the title to “Butterfly Jam.”
⁃ I left the TLOU project more than a year ago and have nothing to do with it. I wish only the best to the show and the people https://t.co/45Q2zVprkq— Kantemir Balagov (@KBalagov) October 28, 2022

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by filmibee.
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