Why would one need to direct a movie in secret? The answers evade me, but perhaps they can be found in Flawed Dogs — the animated childrens’ film that Noah Baumbach has been directing for Dreamworks and has decided not to tell anyone about.
The only reason we even know of Baumbach’s involvement with Flawed Dogs is because the good folks at Bleeding Cool managed to figure it out, and promptly shared it with the rest of the world. Without them, we might have stayed in the dark until Flawed Dogs’ release date (seriously – we found out that Baumbach directed last year’s Frances Ha only when the film was listed as a part of the Telluride Film Festival).
The actual news that Baumbach is directing Flawed Dogs is far less bizarre than the secrecy surrounding it. Baumbach has previously written (or co-written) screenplays for The Fantastic Mr. Fox and Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, so the jump to writing and directing a kids movie isn’t so huge. And Flawed Dogs is as good a piece of source material as any. A series of books (one a picture book, the other a novel) by cartoonist Berkley Breathed, Flawed Dogs tells of Sam the Lion, a purebred Dachshund with a soup ladle where his hind leg should be, who is thrown out on the street and into a world of stray mutts. There’s no word yet on any of the cast, but for all we know Baumbach’s keeping them sworn to secrecy.