Oscar winner Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea), Emmy and Grammy winner Beau Bridges (One Night in Miami…), Emmy nominees Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) and Walton Goggins (The Righteous Gemstones), Jack Dylan Grazer (We Are Who We Are), Noah Jupe (Ford v Ferrari) and Chris Messina (I Care a Lot) have signed on to star in Dreamin’ Wild, a film from writer-director Bill Pohlad, which has entered production in Spokane, Washington.
Like Pohlad’s critically acclaimed second feature, Love & Mercy, which told the story of Beach Boys leader Brian Wilson, Dreamin’ Wild is set in the world of music, telling the true story of instrumental and vocal duo Donnie and Joe Emerson and their family.
When Dreamin’ Wild – the album Donnie self-recorded as a teenager in 1979, with his brother Joe – is re-discovered decades later and meets critical acclaim, adult Donnie is forced to confront ghosts from the past and grapple with the emotional toll his dreams have taken on the family who supported him.
Affleck and Jupe will play the adult and teenage versions of Donnie, with Goggins and Grazer portraying those of Joe. Deschanel will play Donnie’s wife Nancy, with Bridges as Emerson patriarch Don Sr., and Messina as Light in the Attic Records executive Matt Sullivan.
Oscar winner Jim Burke (Green Book) of Innisfree Pictures is producing alongside River Road Entertainment’s Kim Roth (Mudbound) and Pohlad, and SPG3’s Viviana Vezzani (Moonfall) and Karl Spoerri (The Old Man & the Gun). Affleck is exec producing with Christa Workman (David Byrne’s American Utopia), Dan Clifton (Brightburn) and Steven Snyder, with SPG3 co-financing alongside River Road.
Pohlad founded River Road in 1987. The independent production company was behind recent Emmy winner David Byrne’s American Utopia and also produced Steve McQueen’s Best Picture winner 12 Years a Slave, Terrence Malick’s Palme d’Or winner The Tree of Life, and Sean Penn’s Into the Wild, among numerous other titles.
Spoerri, the founder and former artistic director of the Zurich Film Festival, launched SPG3 in 2020, with Urs Wietlisbach and Alfred Gantner—founders of the private equity firm, Partners Group. The production and financing company’s recent projects include Roland Emmerich’s upcoming disaster epic, Moonfall, as well as Nyad, a biopic from Oscar-winning Free Solo directors Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin.
Affleck is represented by WME and Ziffren Brittenham; Bridges by CAA; Deschanel by CAA and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller; Goggins by ICM Partners and Darris Hatch Management and Production; Grazer by Innovative Artists and Tanguay Talent and Entertainment; Jupe by CAA, Grandview, The Artists Partnership (UK) and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller; Messina by CAA, Management 360 and Gendler & Kelly; Pohlad by CAA.
Deals were brokered by Christa Zofcin Workman, Co- President & COO of River Road and Wendy Heller of Heller Law Group.
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