Paul Dano is set to make his directorial debut with Wildlife, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Carey Mulligan in a period drama based on Robert Ford’s 1990 novel. Production is set to launch in November for June Pictures and Nine Stories.
Co-written by Dano and Zoe Kazan, the film centers on a teenage boy who witnesses the decay of his parents’ marriage after their move to Montana. Wildlife is produced by Andrew Duncan and Alex Saks for June Pictures, and Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker for Nine Stories. Oren Moverman, Ann Ruark, and Dano also will produce, while Kazan and Eddie Vaisman are executive producing. WME Global handles the domestic rights to the film.
“In Richard’s book I saw myself and many others,” Dano said. “I have always wanted to make films and have always known I would make films about family. I couldn’t be happier to have such beautiful collaborators like Carey and Jake leading the way.”
Gyllenhaal’s recent credits include Everest, Southpaw and Nightcrawler. The Brokeback Mountain Oscar nominee next stars opposite Amy Adams in Nocturnal Animals, the buzzy revenge drama that premiered at Venice and won the Grand Jury Prize. It opens November 18 in limited release. Mulligan, an Oscar nominee for 2010’s An Education, also appeared in Suffragette, Far From the Madding Crowd and Inside Llewyn Davis. She recently wrapped Mudbound. Dano’s recent acting credits include Swiss Army Man, Love & Mercy and miniseries War & Peace.
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Said June Pictures’ Duncan and Saks: “Paul is a natural born storyteller — a force. We are thrilled to collaborate with him and these phenomenal actors to bring his exquisite vision for this film to life.”
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