For his follow-up to this summer’s widely lauded Boyhood, Richard Linklater has announced that he’ll direct That’s What I’m Talking About, an account of a college student’s freshman year on a hard-partying university baseball team. If it’s good, reporters will call the film a “grand slam” or a “home run.” If it is bad, expect a lot of “Linklater strikes out” or “big whiff from Linklater” headlines. We can take comfort in the fact that no matter what happens, there will a lot of baseball puns.
Today, Deadline reports that That’s What I’m Talking About has taken one step closer to its big at-bat. Boutique production company Annapurna Pictures has snagged the rights to the film, and is poised to add Linklater’s movie to its ever-expanding roster of auteur-driven releases like Spring Breakers, The Grandmaster, Her, and American Hustle. No première date has been set as of yet, but Deadline does have the down-low on Linklater’s batting order. Zoey Deutch (Good Kids), Will Brittain (A Teacher), Ryan Guzman (Step Up: All In), and Glen Powell (Expendables 3) will join the previously announced Blake Jenner, Tyler Hoechlin, and Wyatt Russell on the diamond. Paramount will release the finished film in North America.
It could be a little while until viewers know exactly what it is that Linklater is talking about, but the man has demonstrated time and again that he knows his way around small-town America, young people, and baseball. Here’s hoping it ends up less Bad News Bears and more, as he has suggested, like a collegiate Dazed and Confused (with a dash of Linklater’s baseball doc Inning By Inning).