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The Mysteries of Pittsburgh Gets a Trailer


The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, Michael Chabon's 1988 novel which explores both gay and straight love/lust in the context of a bisexual love triangle and a post-college summer, is finally coming to the big screen after premiering at Sundance in January. It gets a limited release at the end of March. The trailer (Peter Sarsgaard pictured above) was released today. Anybody seen an advance?

Watch the trailer, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. I read the script 3 years ago. It was quite good. The film was finished little more than two years ago and I don't know why it has taken so long to open, but it's rarely a good thing.

    Posted by: secretagentman | Mar 11, 2009 2:07:03 PM

  2. I live in Pittsburgh and so far I know there havent been any advanced screenings here even though almost the entire film was shot here. I also didnt know this movie had a gay theme to it. But I did know that Pittsburgh is not a fan of Sienna Miller after she dissed our city.

    Posted by: Jeff | Mar 11, 2009 2:26:16 PM

  3. I'm a Sienna Miller fan even though she gets a lot of bad press but I think she's a wonderful actress. I'm very interested in see this movie.

    Posted by: mikeinbama | Mar 11, 2009 2:32:41 PM

  4. You can read the review from Sundance here:

    Posted by: stuart | Mar 11, 2009 2:48:47 PM

  5. They've basically gutted the book and eliminated the major gay character. Not worth your time, effort, money, etc.

    Posted by: henry | Mar 11, 2009 3:15:50 PM

  6. I remember reading The Mysteries of Pittsburgh at 17, right after I came out. Great line in there about moving away from Pittsburgh to New York or Tokyo or someplace that was frivilous.

    From that point on I was up and out of The Motor City.

    Posted by: kev | Mar 11, 2009 3:24:13 PM

  7. That first exchange with Nolte is dreadful. Is the dialogue this trite throughout the film (or the book, for that matter)?

    Posted by: Meanwhile | Mar 11, 2009 3:25:02 PM

  8. i have to say, that's not how i remember the book. maybe i was magnifying the gay angle because it's what i wanted to see, but i remember the story as being more bi than hetero.

    Posted by: Brian | Mar 11, 2009 3:28:34 PM

  9. I'll have to re-read the book again. I moved out of pittsburgh in '88 and my roommate at the time worked with Chabon at Jay's Bookstall in Oakland. I thought the book was great when it came out, I was the age of the protagonists and lived a pretty similiar life, hitting the same clubs and partying at homes in the same neighborhoods, going to college at Pitt. Should bring back happy memories. I miss Travelers nightclub in 'Sliberty. I think I'd be afraid to see them butcher the book in the movie version.

    Posted by: Jersey | Mar 11, 2009 3:32:19 PM

  10. Arthur Lecompte & Cleveland Arning have been combined into one character for this film. Make of that what you will.

    Posted by: Bill Cooley | Mar 11, 2009 4:48:47 PM

  11. This trailer looks about as interesting as watching paint dry. It has a very WB Network feel to it. And hasn't the whole "bisexual love triangle" thing been done, like, a gazillion times before?

    Posted by: soulbrotha | Mar 11, 2009 5:04:00 PM

  12. Saw a screening in Pittsburgh a few months ago. It's a sad adaptation of a wonderful book. Since they combined two male characters, it all ends up muddy and unsatisfying. All the gay/bi coming-of-age that takes several chapters in the book turns into a sexual power play on the part of Cleveland/the Sarsgaard character. It's a shame that this movie adaptation turned out so bad when Wonder Boys was all right. Read the book first.

    Posted by: Dave | Mar 11, 2009 5:21:37 PM

  13. I think that I shall re-read the book and skip the movie. The presence of Sarsgaard almost makes up for the boundless dearth of acting talent that is S. Miller but the elimination (virtual) of the gay character commits an unforgivable literary lobotomy on this work of art.

    Posted by: rudy | Mar 11, 2009 5:51:35 PM

  14. I remember having read the book, and I also lived in Pittsburgh (Greentree) in '88, but I cannot remember anything about the book. I think I might see the movie before I attempt to re-read the book. If I re-read the book first, I will surely not enjoy the movie. I have never really gotten into Chabon, but I keep trying. I last read Summerland, which was good, but I would probably never want to re-read it.

    Posted by: Critifur | Mar 11, 2009 5:59:30 PM

  15. Wow, you'd never guess this is a bisexual love triangle, judging by the trailer. I have to wonder for whom the producers are selling this film. Straight guys will not see this, the bisexual angle is absent (as if gay viewers didn't count) and I doubt a lot of straight girls, like me, are interested in seeing Sienna Miller strut up, in skimpy outfits. Limited release ? Straight to video, is where it should have been gone. After "Martian Child", do we need another de-gayed film adaptation ?

    Posted by: Sarina | Mar 11, 2009 6:03:43 PM

  16. Jersey: While I don't really love the idea of combining characters for the sake of easy storytelling, Arthur sort of served as a surrogate for Art's affections for Cleveland in the book, so it is not really that off to combine them into one character that alternatively returns and staves off Art's affections for him.

    Posted by: Jon B | Mar 11, 2009 6:07:46 PM

  17. I saw this film at last year's Seattle International Film Festival and I found it to be rather dry in its execution. Gone are the subtleties, nuances and beauty that made the book such a joy to read. Even Sarsgaard, as brilliant as I think he is, can't make the script come alive. Most of the film feels like content we've all seen before. There is nothing so revolutionary about this movie, and I don't think I would even put it in a gay category. Unfortunately, this adaptation is fairly forgettable.

    Posted by: Ian | Mar 11, 2009 6:09:36 PM

  18. I saw it when it was at SIFF last fall. I was tremendously disappointed, particularly considering how much I love the book. I know you can't keep all the complexity of the novel in the book, but it was really poorly done.

    Posted by: Gitai | Mar 11, 2009 6:46:15 PM

  19. I don't like the sound of combining the Arthur and Cleveland characters they were so different on every level in the book. Although if I remember it was implied that Cleveland was bisexual. The book did do a great job of describing the areas and atmosphere of the city surrounding the Pitt/CMU campuses at the time.

    Posted by: Jersey | Mar 11, 2009 7:23:55 PM

  20. Let's just get to the good part, how much male nudity? ;)

    Posted by: James | Mar 11, 2009 7:42:00 PM

  21. Sounds like another 'At Home at The End of The World' - loved the book, hated the movie. Also, two gay characters where combined in that one too. Love Peter Sarsgaard though - I believe he just missed getting Oscar nods for Shattered Glass & Kinsey.

    Posted by: scar2 | Mar 11, 2009 8:21:54 PM

  22. Just a slight correction. It premiered at Sundance in 2008 not 2009. I still have my ticket stub. I need to read the book because the movie wasn't so good. However, Peter Sarsgaard was my main reason for seeing it.

    Posted by: Tim | Mar 11, 2009 8:38:18 PM

  23. wow looks very interesting!

    Posted by: KFLO | Mar 11, 2009 10:39:02 PM

  24. ooh, I hope they show Sarsgaard schtupping the guy like they did in The Dying Gaul. yum.

    Posted by: shane | Mar 12, 2009 8:34:47 AM

  25. One of my Favorite Books by one of my Favortite Writers...
    if they fuck this film up, I will be sooooo

    Posted by: Stephen | Mar 12, 2009 8:36:58 AM

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