We reported back in December that director Paul Thomas Anderson was looking to make a religion-based film his next project and now it seems one studio has passed on the film. Deadline New York is reporting that Universal Pictures passed on the new Anderson film, which could be due to the disappointing returns from their new film Green Zone. It was said that the studio balked at the $35 million budget of Anderson's film.

The site reports that Anderson is in talks with Bill Pohlad's River Road to secure financing for the film, which will star Phillip Seymour Hoffman and also has Oscar nominee Jeremy Renner circling a role in the film. Not much is known on the story of the film, but it was said that Hoffman would play an eccentric man who starts his own religion in the 1950s, which spreads throughout the nation. The film was also said to question the foundation of religion as a whole as well. If Renner takes the part, he would play Hoffman's right-hand man in the new religion.

Pohlad is also a partner in the upstart studio Apparition and it seems that if a deal is made, Apparition could distribute the film as well.