Post-AACTA Australian Casting Wrap-Up

Australian actors wasted no time following on from last week’s inaugural AACTA Award Ceremony (and red carpet), with some of the industry’s brightest young things and seasoned players securing roles in a number of promising upcoming local and international productions set to bulk up the nominations for next year’s industry love-in.

THE GRANDMOTHERS: Incontinent title, intercontinental production values.

Filming will commence on Monday for the joint Australian-French production of ‘The Grandmothers‘ – a film adapted for the screen by Oscar-winning British screenwriter Christopher Hampton from a short story of the same name by British author Dorris Lessing.

The risqué erotic drama centres around two lifelong friends played by Naomi Watts and Robin Wright Penn who fall in love with each other’s teenage sons, played by Twilight: Eclipse’s Xavier Samuel and Animal Kingdom’s James Frecheville. Ben Mendelsohn and Sophie Lowe, seen together in Lowe’s breakout drama Beautiful Kate, will also star in the film which is to be helmed by French director Anne Fontaine of the Oscar and BAFTA nominated Coco Avant Chanel. So much middle-aged angst, so much young Australian talent!


Joel Edgerton and Jessica Chastain, already set to star together in the upcoming and as of yet untitled Kill Bin Laden project from Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker), have again co-signed in companion pieces The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: His and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Hers. The films are set to be released at the same time as stand alone movies able to be viewed in any order, and will explore the two different sides of a marriage from the perspective of Edgerton’s restaurateur husband and Chastain’s mature-age student wife. Ned Benson wrote the scripts and will direct both films.

The simultaneous release of two films exploring different sides of the same story able to be viewed in the order of your choosing is – dare I say – a pretty original sounding concept. Or is this just another Harry Potter/Twilight Parts I and II gimmick?

Edgerton will also appear in Baz Luhrmann’s greatly anticipated Great Gatsby remake later this year. Duh.

NOAH: Epic story, Biblical budget. Russell Crowe to strap back into his sandals.

Darren Aronofsky is looking to follow up the critically acclaimed Black Swan with an epic appropriation of the Biblical story of Noah for the big screen. Deadline reports that the auteur director wants Our Russ for the role, and while the deal isn’t yet official, we can already imagine a stand up guy (this is old testament to that) like Crowe doing a bang up job: he’s proven to look good in sandals and a beard and brings the kind of bank required of a $130 million project.

Aronofsky has completed a draft of the premise in graphic novel form, with a premise reading as follows:

It was a world without hope, a world with no rain and no crops, dominated by warlords and their barbarian hordes. In this cruel world, Noah was a good man. Seasoned fighter, mage and healer but he only wanted peace for him and his family. Yet every night, Noah was beset by visions of an endless flood, symbolizing the destruction of all life. Gradually he began to understand the message sent him by the Creator. He had decided to punish the men and kill them until the last. But he gave Noah a last chance to preserve life on Earth.

Via Inside Film, Collider