EXCLUSIVE: Casey Affleck is set to star in the upcoming thriller Villain, which Swedish director Mikael Marcimain will direct from Affleck’s own script.
Teddy Schwarzman and Ben Stillman will produce through Schwarzman’s Black Bear Pictures banner, along with Affleck. Nick Meyer’s Sierra/Affinity is handling international sales for the project, which is being launched to buyers at this year’s American Film Market.
Villain is a gritty and grounded thriller about the origins of a modern-day vigilante. Affleck stars as a man who loses everything after a home invasion leaves his family dead and two bullets lodged in his head. Miraculously, he survives and develops a unique power to see into people’s past, present and future. With this gift, he goes on a mission of revenge to find the men who killed his family and in the process clean up his city long overdue for justice. But as his vigilante acts become more frequent and violent in nature, his arrival as the city’s much-needed hero may be the announcement of its most prolific villain.
Affleck’s career is certainly on a roll. There are already whispers of a potential Oscar nomination for his striking performance in Kenneth Lonergan’s Manchester By The Sea. He recently starred in John Hillcoat’s Triple 9. Both titles were also sold by Sierra/Affinity.
Marcimain is one of Sweden’s most acclaimed directors and broke out onto the scene when he picked up the International Critic’s Award at the Toronto Film Festival in 2012 for his film Call Girl. Since then, he has continued to make his mark in both film and television, directing the Netflix-released miniseries Gentleman And Gangsters, which was released as the feature film Gentleman in 2014. Marcimain also directed second unit on Tomas Alfredson’s Oscar-nominated Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.
Schwarzman’s Black Bear has continually offered up impressive slates since its inception in 2011. Not only is the banner behind 2015’s Oscar-winning The Imitation Game, but it’s reunited with that film’s fellow-producers Nora Grossman and Ido Ostrowsky and writer Graham Moore for upcoming Edison and George Westinghouse project The Last Days Of Night, with Eddie Redmayne. Black Bear is producing and financing the title, which is set to shoot in February. Additionally, the production company has the Matthew McConaughey-starrer Gold coming next, and then Suburbicon, the George Clooney-directed film that stars Matt Damon.
Marcimain is repped by Cinetic, CAA and Agent Firman. Affleck is repped by WME.