The cast is finally coming together for director David Cronenberg’s next film. Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis star Robert Pattinson has long been attached to appear in Maps to the Stars, and now THR reports that Julianne Moore, John Cusack, and Sarah Gadon (A Dangerous Method) are set to round out the cast. Written by Bruce Wagner (Wild Palms), the film is described as a ghost story that “offers a critique of celebrity-obsessed society in Los Angeles,” the latter of which is quite a popular topic in film culture at the moment with Sofia Coppola’s similarly-themed film The Bling Ring set to hit theaters this summer.
There’s no word on the characters that the aforementioned actors will play, but production is set to begin in July in Toronto and Los Angeles with Entertainment One Films onboard to finance and distribute the indie. Cronenberg previously stated that he was hoping to nab Viggo Mortensen to star in Maps to the Stars as well, but one assumes Cusack ended up taking that role instead.
Media Rights Capital has acquired the rights to Jonathan Lethem’s slightly insane novel As She Climbed Across the Table. We reported last year that David Cronenberg is directing (a fact I previously failed to remember), and now Deadline reports that MRC has acquired the package with Bruce Wagner (A Nightmare on Elm Street 3) writing the screenplay. Steven Zaillian and Garrett Basch are producing. The story centers on a love triangle between a university professor, his particle physicist girlfriend, and the black hole that results from her experiments attempting to replicate the origins of the universe.
The professor’s girlfriend spurns him in favor of the black hole (which she’s named “Lack”), and the academic risks being sucked into the metaphysical rabbit hole in order to win her back. While the premise is decidedly strange, I relish the thought of Cronenberg taking on this Eternal Sunshine-esque material. With MRC’s backing, hopefully the director gets to work on this one soon. Cronenberg’s next film, A Dangerous Method, will premiere this fall at the Toronto Film Festival. Hit the jump to read a synopsis of the book.
A post-Sopranos HBO set the golden standard for original series on pay cable, Showtime got in the game with their flagship drama Dexter, and Starz recently gained ground with the successful first season of Spartacus: Blood and Sand. Upstart premium channel Epix has recently jumpstarted efforts to get in on the original content market with projects in development from Chris Offutt (Weeds) and Larry Charles (Curb Your Enthusiasm). Now the channel has signed Oscar-winner Oliver Stone and Bruce Wagner to a development deal which will immediately result an adaptation of the Wagner novel Still Holding, a satire of Hollywood excess.
Stone remarked on the union, “I’m interested in the possibilities in television. When a company like EPIX comes along, it’s a chance to break new ground.”
Hit the jump for the full press release.