Usually when a novel trumpets that it’s “laugh out loud funny”, it’s the kind of funny where the characters have twisted themselves an ironic situation that’s makes you inwardly acknowledge “oh, yes, the characters have put themselves in quite the amusing predicament.” But no laughs. One book that did live up to those promises was Christopher Buckley’s “Thank You for Smoking”. There’s many hysterical scenes in that book, including (spoiler) an attempt to kill a tobacco lobbyist with nicotine patches (a bit NewsRadio, another old favorite, concurrently did). So I’ve had high expectations for the film adaptation, and even with the bidding war from this year’s Toronto Film Festival, I’ve been waiting for a preview that shows they didn’t fuck it up.
The first trailer gave me a lot of hope. Aaron Eckhart appears to have a perfect handle on the sincere insincerity required for a lobbyist of an addictive, killing product. Writer and director Jason Reitman seeming to laying out great material grounded in reality, letting the exaggerations play subtly. No release date is set yet, but it’s be sometime after Sundance, as it’s an official selection of the festival.