Paul Thomas Anderson at NYFF in 1997 with Boogie Nights. Photo by Godlis

The world premiere of Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice will screen as the Centerpiece of the upcoming 52nd New York Film Festival. Starring Oscar nominees Joaquin Phoenix and Josh Brolin as well as Academy Award winners Reese Witherspoon and Benicio Del Toro along with Owen Wilson, Martin Short, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, and newcomer Katherine Waterston, the film is the first screen adaptation of the Thomas Pynchon novel. The selection will serve as Anderson's third time at NYFF, following Boogie Nights in 1997 and Punch-Drunk Love in 2002.

Phoenix starred in two films at last year's NYFF: James Gray's The Immigrant and the Closing Night world premiere of Spike Jonze's Her.

Warner Bros. will open Inherent Vice in select runs beginning December 12 before going wide January 9, 2015.

Set in Los Angeles in the 1970s, the film centers on drug-fueled detective Larry “Doc” Sportello who investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend. Anderson directed the film from his own screenplay, based on Pynchon's novel.

“Every new Paul Thomas Anderson movie is an event, an experience—when the lights come up, you feel like you’ve been somewhere, and come back with your mind altered,” said New York Film Festival Director and Selection Committee Chair, Kent Jones. “Inherent Vice is a journey through the past, bringing the texture of the early ’70s SoCal drug culture back to full-blown life. It’s a wildly funny, deeply soulful, richly detailed, and altogether stunning movie.”

JoAnne Sellar, Daniel Lupi, and Anderson produced the film, with Scott Rudin and Adam Somner serving as executive producers.

Last year's NYFF Centerpiece was the world premiere of Ben Stiller's The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.

NYFF previously announced the Opening Night selection Gone Girl, retrospective Joseph L. Mankiewicz: The Essential Iconoclast, as well as initial selections in the Revivals section of the festival to include Burroughs: The Movie, The Color of Pomegranates, Hiroshima Mon Amour, and Once Upon a Time in America.  

Tickets for the 52nd New York Film Festival will go on sale to the general public at noon on Sunday, September 7. Becoming a Film Society member before July 31 provides access to a pre-sale period for single tickets to festival screenings and events ahead of the general public on-sale date.

Subscription Packages and VIP Passes to NYFF52 give the buyer the earliest access to tickets and are on sale through July 31. Depending on the level purchased, packages and passes provide access to Main Slate and Special Event screenings including those on the Opening, Centerpiece, and Closing nights of the festival. VIP passes also provide access to many exciting events including the invitation-only Opening Night party, “Evening With…” Dinners, Filmmaker Brunch, and VIP Lounge.