EXCLUSIVE: Deadline has learned that 8x Oscar nominated actress Glenn Close and Anders Danielsen Lie have signed on to star in a feature film take of Tove Jansson’s novel The Summer Book which Charlie McDowell will direct and produce with his Case Study Films, a production company he co-founded with Alex Orlovsky and wife Lily Collins.
Recently celebrating the 50th anniversary of its original print publication, The Summer Book tells the life affirming story of a young girl and her grandmother as they spend a summer on a tiny, unspoiled island in the Gulf of Finland. The novel distills the essence of the summer into 21 vignettes and has been translated into 35 languages since its first publication in 1972.
Robert Jones adapted the book for screen. Pic is co-financed by High Frequency Entertainment and Hurst Capital. Production starts this summer in Finland.
“I’m deeply honored to be adapting one of my favorite novels, Tove Jansson’s The Summer Book, and to film in Finland, the beautiful country in which this story is based, said McDowell. “It’s long been a dream of mine to work with Glenn Close. I’ve long admired her thoughtfulness, immense versatility, and deeply captivating presence both on the stage and on screen. I first discovered Anders Danielsen Lie from his brilliant collaborations with Joachim Trier and he’s quickly become one of my favorite actors out of Scandinavia. I can’t imagine a more magnificent duo to collaborate with on this film.”
Jansson’s niece, Sophia Jansson, adds, “The Summer Book is dear to many readers around the world. It is my favourite of Tove Jansson’s books, and it holds a very special place in my heart. Every word of it ushers in vivid childhood memories of my beloved grandmother – her voice, her way of relating to and moving around the island. Seeing that story finally come alive on the big screen will be fantastic and moving on a deeply personal level.”
Producers are Kath Mattock for Stille productions, Kevin Loader for Free Range Films, Duncan Montgomery for High Frequency Entertainment, Aleksi Bardy for Helsinki Film and McDowell and Alex Orlovsky for Case Study Films. EPs include Jack Selby for High Frequency, Arthur Farache and Victoria Castelli for Hurst Capital and Collins for Case Study Films.
Close recently completed filming on two features for Netflix: director Seth Gordon’s action-comedy Back in Action and Lee Daniels’ exorcism thriller The Deliverance. Close received Best Support Actress Oscar noms for The World According to Garp, The Big Chill, The Natural and Hilbilly Elegy, and was nominated for Best Actress for Dangerous Liaisons, Fatal Attraction, Albert Nobbs and The Wife. The actress, whose career was launched on Broadway with Barnum, is repped by CAA, MGMT, and Loeb & Loeb.
Norwegian actor Anders Danielson Lie recently starred in the Academy Award nominated film The Worst Person in the World, which earned him rave reviews and international acclaim. Lie is repped by CAA and Panorama Agency.
McDowell is a writer, director, producer and graduate of AFI Conservatory. His directorial debut, The One I Love, starred Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss and premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews. In 2017, McDowell reunited with screenwriter Justin Lader to co-write and direct the Netflix movie The Discovery starring Jason Segel, Rooney Mara, Jesse Plemons and Robert Redford and recently released Windfall on Netflix in 2021 which starred Collins, Plemons and Segal.
CAA Media Finance arranged The Summer Book‘s financing and will represent its worldwide distribution.
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