For my money, the TV event of the year is Nicolas Winding Refn‘s upcoming Amazon series Too Old to Die Young, which stars Miles Teller, John Hawkes and the great Jena Malone, the latter of whom just booked a cool new project that I’ll get to in just a second. Since we share a birth year, I feel like I’ve grown up with Malone, who rarely gets the credit she deserves as an actress. She has been excellent ever since she was just a 14-year-old up-and-comer in 1998’s Stepmom, and she continued to impress me at every turn, from Donnie Darko to the memorable duo of Saved! and The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, all the way to Into the Wild and the Hunger Games sequels. She’s just always interesting on screen, and her taste in projects intrigues me, including her latest one. Collider has learned that Malone has signed on to join Janelle Monáe in an untitled racial thriller from Lionsgate and filmmakers Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz.
Joining Monáe and Malone will be Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire), Kiersey Clemons (Dope), Gabourey Sidibe (Precious), Robert Aramayo (Game of Thrones), Tongayi Chirisa (American Horror Story) and Lily Cowles (Roswell, New Mexico) and Eric Lange (Narcos).
Bush and Renz are directing from their own original screenplay, which follows Veronica (Monáe), a woman desperately trying to flee her captors — leading her on a perilous journey that forces her to question everything about her past, present and future.
Ray Mansfield (Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter) and Sean McKittrick (Us) will produce via QC Entertainment, the company behind Best Picture nominees Get Out and BlacKkKlansman, both of which won screenwriting Oscars. That’s worth noting, since this new film is billed as another provocative story about race relations in America. Zev Foreman (Dallas Buyers Club) will also produce alongside Lezlie Wills.
Bush and Renz directed Jay-Z‘s music video for “Kill Jay Z” as well as Harry Belafonte‘s police brutality PSA “Against the Wall” starring Michael B. Jordan, Danny Glover and Michael K. Williams. They have also worked on campaigns with the MLK Memorial Foundation and Amnesty International.
My fellow Jena Malone fans can check out Too Old to Die Young when it debuts on Amazon Prime on June 14. Even though Refn can go either way, I can’t wait for the director to melt my eyeballs, and I’m jealous of everyone who is going to see the first episode early at Cannes. Malone can currently be seen in Emilio Estevez‘s homeless crisis drama The Public, and she has also wrapped the indie movie Lorelei with Pablo Schreiber. She’s represented by the Gersh Agency.
Elsewhere, UTA reps Sidibe, Aramayo, Clemons and Huston, who is also wrapped by Untitled Entertainment, while Clemons is additionally repped by MJ Management and Mach1 Management. Domain Talent reps Lange and Chirisa, while Industry Entertainment reps Chirisa and Cowles.