Six-time Oscar nominee Wes Anderson has explored some interesting locales and themes in his nine feature films so far. His debut Bottle Rocket was a crime-caper in the Arizona desert, followed by the Houston private school-centered dramedy Rushmore. The Royal Tenenbaums traveled to New York City to put the troublesome title family under the same roof, while The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou traveled to Italy to go underwater. That was the start of Anderson’s cinematic world tour, which also includes India’s The Darjeeling Limited, the fictional Republic of Zubrowka in The Grand Budapest Hotel (shot in Germany), and his recent stop-motion animated film Isle of Dogs, which traveled to a fictionalized Japan. Now, a new project aims to spend some time in France.
As Sud Ouest reports (via The Playlist), Anderson is planning to start the cameras rolling in Angoulême, France in February of 2019 for a 2020 release date. No title has been revealed for the production just yet, but early reports suggest it’ll be set just after World War II, and that it will be a musical. Anderson’s musical stylings have been a major part of the filmmaker’s repertoire over the last 25 years, but this could be the first time music is used to drive the story rather than merely accent it. Anderson has never been one to shy away from trying something new, so this could be the logical next step in his career, though the musical aspect–reported by Charente Libre, via Dark Horizons–has yet to be confirmed.
As for Angoulême, the “balcony of the southwest”, the capital of Charente is home to upwards of 110,000 people in the surrounding area, a region that includes such Anderson-esque settings as the picturesque Ramparts overlooking the city and the river the region is named for, a city hall that’s overrun with greenery, and a preserved, pedestrian-friendly “old town.” There’s lots here for Anderson to play with, so while we don’t know anything about the plot of the film just yet, it’s certain to be a love letter to Southwestern France and its history.