Matt Damon and Anna Paquin are as hot as they’ve ever been, and Mark Ruffalo (now an Avenger) is coming close to being a full blown star. So what’s so fascinating about Kenneth Lonergan’s Margaret is that the film has been mired in controversy for six years. They finished shooting in 2005. Supposedly the hold up was that Lonergran had final cut but he couldn’t get it down to a manageable shape (it was declared a masterpiece by Martin Scorsese in one of those longer cuts), which led to two lengthy lawsuits. During this prolonged post-production two of its producers (Anthony Minghella and Sydney Pollack) have passed away. And now, finally, there’s a trailer. Check it out….

Thematically the script was about New York and September 11, though it’s hard to say what the movie is now. There was some hope the film would hit the festival circuit, and though this could be a two screen “get it off the books” release – there doesn’t seem to be a lot of confidence if you’re releasing a trailer four weeks before your film comes out – perhaps Fox Searchlight is going to see if critics love it before going for any academy attention.

Lonergan’s last film – You Can Count On Me – was hailed as a masterpiece, and made many best of lists for the last decade. Lonergan cut his teeth in theater, and was plucked to help work  in Hollywood on such diverse projects as The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Gangs of New York, so he covers the spectrum. Just from the production history alone, this is one of most fascinating releases of 2011.

Had you heard of Margaret before this?