If you watched the Oscars and wondered why Whiplash was nominated in the adapted screenplay category and not the original one, it’s because the film was adapted from a short film of the same name. Writer/Director Damien Chazelle screened this 17-minute version at Sundance, securing the $3.3 million budget and greenlight to produce the full-length version.
All the key elements are there, including JK Simmons’ Oscar-winning performance as Fletcher, aka SCARY JAZZ DAD (lynchpin of the entire endeavor, obviously) and Tom Cross’s Oscar-winning editing. The main difference is some windows in the room and Johnny Simmons (no relation) from Perks of Being a Wallflower playing Neiman instead of Miles Teller (and some slightly less polished shots, obviously). Also, the creaking floorboards are a little over-the-top, it sounds like a goddamn haunted house in there.
Still, you can see why producers were willing to fund a full-length version, and why they used Miles Teller in it. It’s just not as much fun watching anyone else get called a “faggot-limbed retard.” Frankly, I wish all Miles Teller’s roles involved him getting screamed at until he cries.
Incidentally, Teller is also reportedly set to star in Chazelle’s next film, La La Land, “a musical called about a young L.A. jazz pianist who falls in love with an aspiring actress.”
I’m told that upon hearing about the script, Teller’s agent said “Wow, this part sounds perfect for Miles! …Wait, did you say ‘pianist?'”
[Hat tip: ScreenCrush]