Phoenix's pot-smoking detective 'Doc' Sportello sits next to Brolin's bearded 'Bigfoot' Bjornson in the first picture from the Paul Thomas Anderson-directed movie.
The first official photo from Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice" has been released. Arriving via Entertainment Weekly, the image gives fans a first look at Joaquin Phoenix and Josh Brolin as Larry "Doc" Sportello and Christian "Bigfoot" Bjornson, respectively.
Based on a 2009 novel of the same title by Thomas Pynchon, the film is set in Los Angeles in 1970 and centers on pot-smoking detective Doc who helps his former girlfried, a surfer named Shasta Fay, to investigate the disappearance of her current boyfriend.
"Inherent Vice" will premiere at the New York Film Festival in October before opening in U.S. theaters on December 12. The film also stars Katherine Waterston, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio Del Toro, Jena Malone, Martin Short and Maya Rudolph.
Waterson, who plays the surfer girl in the film, recently expressed her excitement to work with director Anderson. "With Paul, he's interested in what might happen, not what should happen. He doesn't walk onto set with a clear goal. That can be...surprising. It didn't feel chaotic; it felt thrilling. The set felt really vital. Like you are going into a question together," she told EW for their Fall Movie Preview issue which is out now.
Brolin also praised the filmmaker, saying to the magazine, "With this [film], there was a lack of pretense-a really strange lack of pretense. When something isn't working, you can say, 'This feels like a turd. Let's cut the middle three pages. I'll try to improvise and provide a bridge. How about some pancakes?' "
When asked about the pancakes, he added, "I'm not joking about the pancakes. Many, many pancakes. By the end of the day, you're shaking so much because you've eaten so many pancakes, you know you're going to be diabetic in the next 24 hours."