Just the other day, when putting together a list of potential The Batman directors, I lamented that it’s been too long since we’ve seen anything from filmmaker Cary Fukunaga. That’s no fault of his—fresh off the success of True Detective, the Jane Eyre director made his passion project Beasts of No Nation a reality at Netflix, and then entered development on a couple of projects that didn’t pan out. He was lined up to write and direct the high-profile It movie, but departed over creative differences. Then he was set to spearhead the TNT series The Alienist, but dropped out of directing that show due to delays. But now Fukunaga’s next project is firming up, and we have an official production start-date.
As was announced previously, Fukunaga will direct the 10-episode dark comedy series Maniac for Netflix and Paramount Television, with Emma Stone and Jonah Hill starring, and Deadline reports that filming is now set to begin on August 15th in New York City. This won’t be as grueling a shoot as True Detective, as filming is set to wrap up right before Thanksgiving, making this a significant yet not extremely time-consuming project that fits right into Fukunaga, Stone, and Hill’s busy schedules.
Maniac is based on a 2014 Norwegian series and revolves around two characters stuck in a mental institution who escape into their own fantasy worlds. The premise offers some seriously great visual opportunities, and Fukunaga has shown as both a director a cinematographer that he has an eye for searing, memorable aesthetics.
This is a major coup for Netflix, especially given that Stone is about to become an Oscar winner for her role in La La Land. She most recently wrapped Battle of the Sexes and is gearing up to shoot the Yorgos Lanthimos film The Favourite, so Maniac will slot right into her schedule quite nicely. As for Hill, he’s in the mix for a couple of different films as an actor, but more pressingly is prepping to shoot his directorial debut Mid-90s.
Fukunaga, meanwhile, has been developing Maniac alongside The Alienist and is expected to tackle the long-developing The Black Count as his next feature film. That movie tells the true story of The Count of Monte Cristo author Alexandre Dumas.
So there you have it. Cary Fukunaga will finally be back behind a camera this August with one hell of a cast at his disposal. It’s unclear when Maniac will hit Netflix, but late 2018 seems possible.