"Altman Finds More Companions"

Meryl Streep, Lindsay Lohan and Woody Harrelson
to take part in the fictionalized last show of Garrison Keillor.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005
By Mark Umbach

Two-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep will team with teen star Lindsay Lohan and Oscar nominee Woody Harrelson for A Prairie Home Companion, the next project from Oscar-nominated filmmaker Robert Altman. GreeneStreet Films and River Road Entertainment will be executive producing and financing the film, with Altman's Sandcastle 5 Prods. producing. Shooting will take place over the summer in Minneapolis.

The project is a spin-off from Garrison Keillor's famous radio variety show of the same name. Keillor will both pen the script for the film and appear as himself in the adaptation. In addition to Streep, Lohan and Harrelson, John C. Reilly, Lily Tomlin and Maya Rudolph are all attached to star. Kevin Kline has also started talks to take a role.

The film will be based on the idea that after 30 years of success, Keillor's award-winning variety show is being pulled off the air. The ensemble will star as performers and backstage crew working to pull off one last live broadcast. In the process, passions run wild and tempers flare as a domineering stage manager tries to hold the production together. Streep and Tomlin will play sisters, with Lohan playing a sexy young performer.

On the air since 1974, Prairie Home features Keillor telling tales of the fictional town of Lake Wobegon with musical interludes featured throughout the broadcast. Capitol Films, which worked with Altman on Gosford Park and The Company, will handle international sales on the film.