Jake Gyllenhaal to re-team with Denis Villeneuve for The Son
Nine Stories and Bold Films are bringing Jo Nesbo’s critically-acclaimed crime novel The Son to the big screen. Denis Villeneuve is set to direct the film adaptation, and will develop alongside Nine Stories’ producers Jake Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker, and Bold’s Michel Litvak. Bold’s Gary Michael Walters will executive produce with Jo Nesbo and Niclas Salomonsson. This marks the third collaboration for Gyllenhaal and Villeneuve who previously collaborated on Enemy and Prisoners.
A prolific Scandinavian author, Jo Nesbo is a world-renowned writer whose books have garnered countless international awards, sold more than thirty million copies, and been translated into fifty languages. Most recently, Nesbo’s crime novel The Snowman was adapted into a film by Tomas Alfredson for Working Title.
“Denis is one of the most inspiring filmmakers working today, and partnering with him on ‘The Son’ represents everything that Jake and I strived for when we launched the company. Provocative and edgy material in collaboration with a visionary storyteller. We were attracted to The Son because beneath its dark and violent exterior is a universal story about a man who seeks the truth,” stated Marker.
“‘The Son’ is our first development project with Jake and Riva and epitomizes the original, elevated work with top filmmakers that is the raison d’etre for our Nine Stories relationship,” said Bold’s Litvak.
“Nine Stories has had an extraordinarily rapid launch at Bold with our first film together Stronger already wrapped,” said Walters.
The Son follows the life of Sonny Lofthus, a once gifted 15-year-old and promising wrestler, whose downward spiral ensues when his cop father commits suicide. For the past twelve years, Sonny’s time in prison has been nurtured by an uninterrupted supply of heroin from a seedy chaplain on the inside. When Sonny learns long-hidden truths about his father’s unexpected death, he makes a brilliant escape and begins hunting down the people responsible for his wrongful sentence.
Nine Stories, who has a first look and overhead deal with Bold Films, recently completed principal photography on their first feature film David Gordon Green’s Stronger. Gyllenhaal stars as the working-class Boston man Jeff Bauman, whose iconic photo from the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing captured the hearts of the world. Inspired by a true story and based on the New York Times bestseller, Stronger is the deeply personal account of the heroic journey that came after that photo – defining a man’s inner courage, a community’s pride, a family’s bond and an unexpectedly tenacious love. Lionsgate will release Strongerin 2017.
Already in development at Nine Stories is Jack Hitt’s popular “This American Life” account of Lee Yopp, a former football coach turned theater director, who was hired by the US army to stage an annual music pageant on Fort Bragg. Tony-nominee Alex Timbers will direct. Also in development is Antoine Fuqua’s cartel drama The Man Who Made It Snow, based on David Mermelstein’s best-selling autobiography. Gyllenhaal is set to star as Max Mermelstein, a Jewish hotel engineer who transformed Pablo Escobar’s Medellin Cartel from a small mom-and-pop drug organization into a billion-dollar enterprise. The company is also in post-production on a feature documentary about acclaimed photographer, Christopher Hondros, who was killed on assignment in Libya in 2011, as told by his best friend and journalist, Greg Campbell. In television, they are developing an anthology series for A&E Network that explores major American cult personas over history. The first season highlights the riveting story of cult leader Jim Jones, who was responsible for the 1978 mass murder-suicide in Jonestown, Guyana.
An Academy Award nominated actor, Gyllenhaal will commence production on Bong Joon Ho’s Okja and Daniel Espinosa’s Life later this year. Gyllenhaal stars opposite Amy Adams in Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals scheduled to open November 18, 2016.
Villeneuve’s recent credits include Sicario, which was nominated for three Academy Awards. He is currently in post production on Story of Your Life with Jeremy Renner and Amy Adams and soon begins production on the Blade Runner sequel starring Harrison Ford.
(Photo Credit: WENN.com)