Is Joaquin Phoenix coming out of retirement for Paul Thomas Anderson?

By Sean O’Connell The idea of Paul Thomas Anderson, director of “Boogie Nights,” “Magnolia” and “There Will Be Blood,” helming a picture based loosely on L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology has me salivating. Drink my milkshake, indeed!

The as-yet-untitled project – at one point known as “The Master” – is moving ahead with Philip Seymour Hoffman and a unretired Joaquin Phoenix, Deadline reports. The Weinstein Co. has agreed to distribute.

Hoffman reportedly will play the creator of a faith-based organization during the 1950s. As for Phoenix, he’ll play a lost soul who joins Hoffman’s religion and becomes his right-hand man.

It is a return to form for most involved. Anderson has not directed since “Blood,” while Phoenix pretended to retire for the benefit of brother-in-law Casey Affleck’s experimental documentary, “I’m Still Here.”

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