Derek Cianfrance obviously likes his male leads to be on the taciturn, moody side. Having made two films with Ryan Gosling, Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond the Pines, he’s now looking to work with the Irish actor Michael Fassbender (Hunger, Prometheus) on his latest project. The Light Between Oceans is the story of a lighthouse keeper – an Australian World War One veteran in M.L. Stedman’s novel – and his wife who discover a dead body and a baby in a boat and raise the child as their own, a decision that leads to ramifications down the track. No word on a co-star yet for the prolific Fassbender.
Cross-dressing queen gets new look
A Kaurismaki brother update: Older Finnish sibling Mika (L.A. Without a Map) is directing The Girl King, a biopic about the 17th century Swedish monarch, Queen Christina, who was renowned for dressing as a man and abdicating her throne, and has previously been played by Greta Garbo in Rouben Mamoulian’s titular 1933 tale. The cast includes Sarah Gadon (A Dangerous Method; screening this Saturday at 8:30pm on SBS ONE), Michael Nyqvist (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), and Martina Gedeck (The Baader-Meinhof Complex); younger Finnish sibling Aki (Drifting Clouds, Le Havre) is currently between projects.
Smith becomes 'brilliant'
Brilliance is one of those Hollywood movies that’s hiring movie stars before actually signing a director to shoot them. In the adaptation of Markus Sakey’s science-fiction thriller novel, Will Smith (Hancock), who really needs to deliver a make amends performance after delivering After Earth with his son Jaden, will play one of the new one percent, the “brilliants” who possess extraordinary skills. Smith’s character uses his ability to capture terrorists, leading him to pursue a brilliant who wants to set off a war. Noomi Rapace (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Prometheus) will play his destructive adversary.
Bigelow sticks with terror
Having most recently made The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Kathryn Bigelow will once again focus on post-9/11 life. The American filmmaker will direct an adaptation of Anand Giridharadas’ non-fiction book The True American: Murder and Mercy in Texas. It’s the story of two men, a former Bangladeshi army officer who’d immigrated to America, and the Texan-born man who walked into a Dallas convenience store and shot him, as well as killing two other men, a few days after the deadly attacks on the World Trade Centre. Ten years later, the victim would campaign to save his attacker from the death penalty, and the story of redemption will star Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) as the shooter, Mark Stroman.