Pieces of April by Peter Hedges
The Shooting Script (Newmarket Shooting Script Series)

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Synopsis

Written over a period of three years, picked upand shut down three times before it wasfinally "greenlit," Pieces of April became aSundance Film Festival 2003 favorite, capturingthe attention of critics, festival moviegoers, and arecord sale to distributor United Artists. Markingthe directorial debut of Oscar®-nominatedscreenwriter and novelist Peter Hedges, the moviestars Katie Holmes, Patricia Clarkson, and DerekLuke, with Sean Hayes and Oliver Platt.

A poignant and funny film about a day in thelife of a family trying to create new memoriesand make peace with the old, the acclaimed,independent film was shot in 16 days, mainly inNew York City's Lower East Side. The story centerson 21-year-old April Burns, who has neverbeen on good terms with her mother and is convincedby her boyfriend to host the familyThanksgiving dinner. While April discovers heroven is broken and seeks neighbors to help, theBurns family drives toward the city recountingApril's failures. Although his wife persists inundermining his plans, April's father is determinedto create a bonding experience for thefamily, including April's perfect-daughter sister,younger brother, and forgetful grandmother.

In the esteemed Newmarket ShootingScript® Series format, Hedges includes an introductionand scene notes, written exclusively forthis edition, as well as the complete shootingscript, his original opening of the screenplay, stills,and cast and crew credits. Also featured is aninsightful conversation with Hedges on his acting,playwriting, and film career.

 

About Peter Hedges

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Peter Simpson Hedges was born July 6, 1962 in Des Moines Iowa. He attended North Carolina School of the Arts where he studied drama. His novel What's Eating Gilbert Grape was adapted into a critically acclaimed movie of the same title, which launched his film career. In 2002, he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay for About a Boy. In the same year, he wrote and directed Pieces of April, starring Katie Holmes. In 2007, he co-wrote and directed Dan in Real Life. He wrote and directed The Odd Life of Timothy Green in 2012. His plays include: Imaging Brad, Baby Anger, Teddy by the Sea, and Good as New. His other novels include An Ocean in Iowa and The Heights.
 
Published September 8, 2003 by Newmarket Press. 160 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Pieces of April

Publishers Weekly

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In the late 1980s, Hedges, who adapted What's Eating Gilbert Grape, first had the idea for the screenplay Pieces of April--about a 20-something living in Manhattan's Alphabet City who tries to bridge an estranged relationship with her mother who's sick with cancer.

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Examiner

There’s always that one person in every family (immediate or extended) that doesn’t quite fit in with the rest.

Jan 18 2012 | Read Full Review of Pieces of April: The Shooting...

AV Club

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Shot on grungy video for little money, Pieces Of April keeps the two plot strands away from each other until the last possible moment, sustaining a crude dialogue between Holmes' frantic preparations and Clarkson's long, inexorable journey to the big city.

Oct 14 2003 | Read Full Review of Pieces of April: The Shooting...

Entertainment Weekly

Driving in from the Pennsylvania suburbs on an overcast Thanksgiving morning, Jim (Oliver Platt), the genial plump father of the scrappy, nettlesome Burns clan, tells his family how eager he is to visit his daughter, a pigtailed punkette named April (Katie Holmes), and to meet her new boyfriend.

Oct 15 2003 | Read Full Review of Pieces of April: The Shooting...

PopMatters

The family fracture is clear enough, yet the film underlines it anyway, as when Bobby starts decorating the apartment with paper cut-out turkeys and other faux Mayflowerish items, April objects, “They don’t deserve decorations.” The boyfriend we all want to have, Bobby has the right answer: “Yeah...

Oct 23 2003 | Read Full Review of Pieces of April: The Shooting...

Time Out New York

Holmes is April, the black sheep of her family, who's about to introduce the folks to her black boyfriend (Luke) in their pokey New York apartment.

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New York Magazine

Her pot-smoking brother (John Gallagher Jr.) and prissy sister (the aptly named Alison Pill) and dotty grandmother (Alice Drummond) are packed in the car, along with her parents, Jim (Oliver Platt), the family peacekeeper, and Joy (Patricia Clarkson), who so dreads April’s cooking that she fills ...

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Star Pulse

Full Summary >> Great Film Moments: Pieces of April Pieces of April Thanksgiving Family Come, Family Go View All Great Film Moments >> Pieces of April - Clip - Believe me, I know!

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