Dear Evan Hansen: Julianne Moore joins Universal’s film adaptation
According to Variety, Academy Award winner Julianne Moore (Still Alice) has signed on to star opposite Golden Globe nominee Ben Platt (The Politician) in Universal Pictures’ forthcoming film adaptation of the hit Broadway musical Dear Evan Hansen. Moore is set to portray the role of the titular character’s mother named Heidi Hansen, a role which was first portrayed by Tony winner Rachel Bay Jones.
This project will also mark Moore’s latest collaboration with previously announced cast member Amy Adams, who worked together in 20th Century Studios’ The Woman in the Window which was originally scheduled for a theatrical release last May 15 before Netflix had acquired the film.
Dear Evan Hansen tells a story exploring themes of teen suicide and mental illness, following a high schooler who’s plagued with social anxiety, eventually making up a story to befriend the family of a classmate of his who had committed suicide. The musical won multiple Tony Awards in 2017, including Best Musical as well as Best Actor and Best Actress for stars Ben Platt and Rachel Bay Jones.
The film adaptation will again be led by original star Ben Platt as he reprises the titular role. Joining him are Golden Globe nominee Kaitlyn Dever (Booksmart) and Amandla Stenberg (The Hate U Give) along with Oscar nominee Amy Adams. It will also feature Nik Dodani, Colton Ryan, and Danny Pino.
Dever is set to star as Zoe, the sister to the classmate, who begins dating the titular character after he enters a relationship with her family, while Adams is set to star as Cynthia Murphy, the mother of Evan’s classmate.
Stenberg is set to play Alana, a high school senior whose cheery façade and social-media savvy hide a deeper loneliness and isolation and chooses to respond to the death of a classmate by igniting a movement. The role of Alana is being reconceived and expanded for the film adaptation, with Stenberg also partnering with Academy Award-winning duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, who composed the music and wrote the lyrics for the Broadway production, to compose a new original song for the film.
Marc Platt and Adam Siegel will be producing through Marc Platt Productions while Pasek and Paul are expected to be executive producers. Steven Levenson, who authored Dear Evan Hansen, and also won a Tony for Best Book of a Musical, is set to write the script with The Perks of Being a Wallflower‘s Stephen Chbosky attached to direct the project.
Pasek and Paul previously won an Oscar for Best Song for “City of Stars” from Damien Chazelle’s La La Land. They were also nominated for Best Original Song for “This Is Me” from the Hugh Jackman vehicle, The Greatest Showman.
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