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The director could do to cooking what Sideways did for wine with his next film which will be made with Gary Sanchez productions.
The Menu is set in the world of high-end culinary culture. A couple travel to an exclusive destination restaurant on a remote island where a chef has created a lavish degustation menu with multiple course as well a few gruesome surprises. There’s no time line as to when this will shoot but sources claim it will be Payne’s next feature.
Payne’s films always draw critical acclaim, apart from his last effort ‘Downsizing’ which received a mixed bag of reactions, but the writer/director usually hits the mark bot at the box office and with the critics.
As the director is a darling of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences it’s reasonable to assume that we could see The Menu in the running for an Oscar next year. Payne already has two gongs for Best Screenplay for The Descendants and Sideways. We already saw Chef Jose Andres on stage at this year's Oscars.
Payne is a long-time foodie, his interest in wine gave birth to Sideways, possibly the gratest wine movie ever made. The film supposedly drastically affected sales of Pinot Noir in the United States the year after its release and negatively affected sales of Merlot.
He appeared on the ‘Cooking by Ear’ podcast Payne prepares a vegetable gratin and bechamel. He compares cooking for people to the craft of making a film – a two-hour experience with certain rhythms and speaks about how during a difficult period in his life he headed to San Francisco and spent time cooking in a restaurant kitchen. The podcast is below.