August: Osage County (2013) Poster


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Filming at the house took place in the fall. At times it was as chilly as 40 degrees outside. When the leaves around the house began to turn, the production crew painted them green. When the leaves began falling, computer-generated ones were added in post-production.
Tracy Letts wanted the original stage cast to reprise their roles in the film version. Ultimately, none of the original actors appear in the movie.
While promoting her film Mirror Mirror (2012), Julia Roberts teared up and cried in an interview while sharing the news about her acting in her first film opposite Meryl Streep, who she claimed was her favorite actress.
Gary Cole was offered the role of Steve Heidebrecht, which he played in the London stage version. He declined.
Dueing initial casting Harvey Weinstein suggested Judi Dench as Violet and Nicole Kidman as Barbara. Sreenwriter Tracy Letts voted against the idea, saying American actors should play the roles.
During the opening scene with Beverly and Johnna, one of the books clearly in focus behind Johnna is Karen Blixen's autobiography "Out of Africa." Meryl Streep starred in the film version, and was nominated for an Academy Award.
Tracy Letts unsuccessfully objected to Harvey Weinstein's decision to cast British actors Ewan McGregor, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Andrea Riseborough (who was nearly cast as Karen) because the characters were written to be all-American. He admitted a change of view after he saw the film.
The production crew bought the house and completely refurbished it. Known locally as the 'Boulanger' family home, it was built in 1918 from a Sears & Roebuck catalog with the addition of the two-story columns and surrounding porch. The crew dug up a 100-year-old oak tree at the back of the house and replanted it out front.
Chloë Grace Moretz auditioned for the role of Jean Fordham, but lost to Abigail Breslin.
Julia Roberts and Dermot Mulroney remain great friends since My Best Friend's Wedding. Roberts was the first person Mulroney called when he got this part, the actor told that they both yelled on the phone like little girls.
Abigail Breslin (Jean) had a 103 degree fever when she auditioned for the role.
Renée Zellweger and Andrea Riseborough were considered for a role. Riseborough was cast but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts. Juliette Lewis replaced her.
Beverly Weston, the Weston family patriarch, was played by Dennis Letts, playwright Tracy Letts' father in the Steppenwolf premiere of the play.
Jim Carrey was considered for the role of Steve.
The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and Chris Cooper; and four Oscar nominees: Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, Abigail Breslin and Sam Shepard.
"Life is very long" --the opening line spoken by Sam Shepard's character Beverly Weston--is from T.S. Eliot's infamous "Hollow Men" poem, but it's a line borrowed from Joseph Conrad's novel "An Outcast of the Islands". The hollow emptiness of modern, Western life is a grand theme of this movie and its original stage play. Also, the name of the major female character, "Vi" for Violet, is very similar to the name of Eliot's wife, Vivienne. In addition, Sam Shepard--whose father was also a teacher and drinker like the Bev Weston he portrays--has long been a playwright documenting the demise of the American dream in works such as "True West".
Julia Roberts and Sam Shepherd played lovers in The Pelican Brief and now father and daughter in this film
Jane Fonda, Sissy Spacek, Jessica Lange, Glenn Close, and Annette Bening were all mentioned as possibilities to play Violet Weston.
One critic noted that the story, in both its stage and film version, "draws heavily on Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes (1941)"
The play August: Osage County won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for its playwright, Tracy Letts. Sam Shepard, who plays family patriarch Beverly Weston in this movie adaptation of Letts' play, won the 1979 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for his play Buried Child (and was also a Pulitzer finalist in 1983 and 1984 for True West and Fool for Love, respectively).
Kathy Bates was in talks to play Mattie Fae Aiken.
The role of Violet Weston was originally played by Deanna Dunagan who won a Tony Award for her performance on Broadway (she also played the role in its world premiere at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre Company). Phylicia Rashad and Estelle Parsons replaced Dunagan later in the play's Broadway run.
Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep both previously performed voice work in The Ant Bully; however, they did not meet until working together on this film.
Sissy Spacek was considered for the role of Violet Weston.
The second collaboration between Meryl Streep and Chris Cooper after starring together in Adaptation.
This is the third time Tracy Letts writes the film adaptation of one of his plays.
Julia Roberts and Dermot Mulroney previously appeared together in "My Best Friends Wedding" 16 years before this movie.
This movie marks the fourth collaboration between Meryl Streep and Margo Martindale. They previously appeared together in Marvin's Room (1996), The Hours (2002), and ...First Do No Harm (1997).
The song in the 2nd Trailer is "Stubborn Love" by the The Lumineers.
Has the same tag phrase as Meet the Fockers (2004)
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In the original Chicago Steppenwolf production (June 2007) of Tracy Letts's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, the corresponding cast - movie / play (character) - is as follows:
The book of poetry Beverly Weston authored is ironically titled "Meadowlark," a bird which is an Indian symbol of hope and joy, two things totally lacking in the extended Weston family.
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At times, story plays like "Mama's Family (1983)' with Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence, Harvey Korman, Betty White, and Tim Conway.
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Academy Award winners Julia Roberts and Chris Cooper first appeared on-screen together in Miami Vice: Mirror Image (1988), the fourth year's season finale cliffhanger in which Detective James "Sonny" Crockett, played by Don Johnson, is stricken with amnesia during in an explosion and believes himself to be his undercover persona of Burnett. Roberts plays Polly Wheeler, a socialite art dealer who falls for Burnett, and Cooper plays Jimmy Yagovitch, a corrupt police detective investigating Burnett's background.
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Early in the movie while someone is driving, the radio announcer states that the song is by JD & The Straight Shot. That is the band of Cablevision CEO and owner of Madison Square Garden, James L. Dolan.
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Steve cellphone ringtone is the theme song to the tv show Sandford and Son
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The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

The original ending simply ends with Violet breaking down with Johnna in her company after all her daughters left the family home. Although this is Tracy Letts and John Wells' preferred ending, the negative test audience reaction from previews prompted producer Harvey Weinstein to demand the ending to be replaced with a new ending. According to Wells, the preview audience's bone of contention was on the resolution of Barbara whom they were assuming that she ends up in the similar predicament as Violet, but it turns out not to be as it was implied.

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