Home of the Giants (2007)
The actor, who became a child star with "The Sixth Sense" but hasn't appeared in a film since 2007's "Home of the Giants," has signed on to star in "Sex Ed," a comedy from MPCA.
Isaac Feder, who has helmed commercials as well as shorts, is directing the coming-of-age tale the script by Billy Kennedy.
Producing are Brad Jenkel and Brad Krevoy of MPCA, as well as Seth Grossman and Aperture Entertainment's Adam Goldworm.
Osment will play, according to producers, "a college graduate who dreams of teaching high school Algebra but due to budget restraints, ends up teaching sexual education, despite being a virgin. He discovers an unlikely mentor in a blues bar, a ruthless enemy in the local PTA, and a gorgeous Polish girl for whom English is a distant second language."
MPCA just wrapped principal photography on "Deathgames," starring Samuel L. Jackson,
CHICAGO -- March Madness shows its sinister side in Home of the Giants, a saga about Indiana state-championship basketball. The main rivalry is not on the court, but off the hardwood, as two brothers go one-on-one in a good-vs.-evil showdown. This appealing, heady independent film won audience fans here at the Chicago International Film Festival.
Starring Ryan Merriman as Matt, a high-school basketball star, and Haley Joel Osment as Gar, his loyal, brainy sidekick, Home of the Giants is funny and gritty. With sly digs at high-school culture, filmmaker Rusty Gorman spins a sharp morality story centered on the tribal insanity of Indiana high-school basketball.
In this sharp depiction of middle-American life, Matt is reveling in his "glory days": He's the high-school star who realizes that he'll never play at the next level. He's got a one-man entourage in his brainy friend Gar (Osment), who, both realize, will someday far outpace Matt in the game of life.
Filmmaker Rusty Gorman puts a shrewd trajectory on this jock yarn, layering the drive to the championship with some unsettling human issues. At its core, Home of the Giants is played out on a much larger court, and Matt's greatest challenge is to overcome the dark legacy of his older brother.
Giants is smartly shot with just the right character rotation between its two leads: As the sharp-shooting star, Merriman struts with high-school star cockiness and self-absorption, while Osment is winning as the sidekick who must assume leadership.
Other players deliver solid turns: Kenneth Mitchell is riveting as Matt's bad-apple brother. Danielle Panabaker's new-girl-in-school freshness adds a perky dimension to the storyline. Writer-director Gorman shows a talent for credible character creations and a deft control of the story, no mean feat since Giants blends multiple narrative styles of drama, romance and comedy.
Technical contributions are A-game, most prominently editor Dan Schalk's up-tempo pacing and cinematographer Rodney Taylor's on-target framings of the heartland.
HOME OF THE GIANTS
SymPics International and Blue Rider Pictures present
a Rusty Gorman Film
Director/writer: Rusty Gorman
Producers: William R. Greenblatt, L. Charles Grimes, Dan Schalk, Eugene Osment
Director of photography: Rodney Taylor
Production designer: Jennifer O'Kelly
Music: Michael Suby
Costume designer: Lisa Norcia
Editor: Dan Schalk
Gar: Haley Joel Osment
Matt: Ryan Merriman
Keith: Kenneth Mitchell
Bridgette: Danielle Panabaker
Prock: Brent Briscoe
Mrs. Gartland: Kathleen LaGue
Running time -- 101 minutes
No MPAA rating
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