Emmy and Tony winner Cherry Jones and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist-turned-actor Michael “Flea” Balzary have come aboard the coming-out drama Boy Erased, from writer/director Joel Edgerton. Xavier Dolan (I Killed My Mother), singer/songwriter and YouTube personality Troye Sivan, Emily Hinkler (Tyler Perry’s Boo 2), Jesse LaTourette (Z Nation), David Joseph Craig (The Gift), Théodore Pellerin (It’s Only the End of the World), and Britton Sear (HBO’s Vice Principals) round out the cast of the film, which is based on Garrard Conley’s novel Boy Erased: A Memoir of Identity, Faith, and Family. They join previously announced stars Lucas Hedges, Russell Crowe, Nicole Kidman, and Edgerton.
The film centers on Jared (Hedges), the son of a Baptist pastor in a small American town, who is outed to his parents (Kidman and Crowe) at age 19. Jared is faced with an ultimatum: attend a gay conversion therapy program – or be permanently exiled and shunned by his family, friends, and faith. Boy Erased is the true story of one young man’s struggle to find himself while being forced to question every aspect of his identity.
Edgerton and Anonymous Content’s Kerry Kohansky-Roberts and Steve Golin are producing the pic, which will begin shooting this fall for a 2018 theatrical release. Conley will serve as a consultant to ensure an accurate adaption of his memoir, which was published by Penguin Random House. The film seems to be headed in the right direction to tell this intrinsic story, casting members of the LGBTQ community such as Jones, Dolan, Sivan, and Craig.
Exec producers are Rebecca Yeldham, Ann Ruark, and Anonymous’ Kim Hodgert and Tony Lipp. Josh McLaughlin will oversee the project for the studio. Focus Features is distributing the film worldwide.