Paul Thomas Anderson has already cast some very famous stars for his adaptation of Thomas Pynchon's Inherent Vice, but for all their celebrity and critical championing, none among them could lay claim to having sprung from the eyebrowed loins of Law & Order star Sam Waterston. So Anderson has finally addressed that defect with the casting of Katherine Waterston, the up-and-coming actress who’s worked steadily in theatre and enjoyed supporting roles in films such as Michael Clayton and Taking Woodstock and on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, surely as much as she enjoyed receiving sage, fatherly advice from Sam Waterston. Which would be awesome.
Deadline reports that Waterston has landed the part of Shasta Fay Hepworth, the ex-girlfriend of Joaquin Phoenix’s character who sets the plot in motion—a role that was previously believed to belong to Reese Witherspoon, but now no longer does even though she’s an American. Nevertheless, Witherspoon is still on board in some capacity, alongside Benicio Del Toro, Owen Wilson, Martin Short, Jena Malone, Josh Brolin, and (probably) Sean Penn, all of who definitely could have benefited from having Sam Waterston to talk to during their uncertain teenaged years. We all could have.