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'Margaret,' with Matt Damon and Anna Paquin, finally gets release date

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Myles Aronowitz

Eleven years after his heralded first film, You Can Count on Me, director Kenneth Lonergan’s sophomore effort is finally going to be released. Margaret, the story of “a 17-year-old New York City high-school student who feels certain that she inadvertently played a role in a traffic accident that has claimed a woman’s life,” will receive a limited-platform release on Sept. 30, according to Fox Searchlight.

Filmed in 2005 with an eclectic cast that includes Matt Damon, Anna Paquin, Mark Ruffalo, Allison Janney, and Matthew Broderick, the movie has been stuck in limbo after Lonergan initially submitted a three-plus hour cut that was deemed unreleasable by the studio. Dueling lawsuits were filed in 2009, and several high-profile Hollywood powerbrokers were recruited to mediate the dispute and persuade the director to deliver a shorter, more commercial film. Fans of the actors and Lonergan, who has also cowritten films such as Gangs of New York, will be eager to see on Sept. 30 what ultimately made the released version — so they can then speculate about what did not.