It’s been a good week for writer/director Florian Zeller, the stage veteran who adapted his own play The Father for his first screen feature. Yesterday, the drama racked up six nominations at the upcoming Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and now Zeller has spun that traction into the announcement of another project very much in the same vein.
His next film will further scale the family tree, as he’ll adapt his own play The Son in a continuation of the Immediate Relatives Cinematic Universe. Deadline also broke the news that Zeller has talent in mind for the title role, though he won’t specify whom just yet.
Over the 2010s, the French playwright Zeller completed a trilogy of theatre works encompassing The Father, The Son, and The Mother. (In 2019, Isabelle Huppert starred in the latter.) While his recently released film followed an aging man’s descent into dementia, The Son focuses on an adolescent boy torn between his divorcing mother and father as they start to build lives separate from one another.
All the same, the two works will share themes of strain in intimate relations, as we struggle to help our loved ones in the ways they need and vice versa. It’s easy to see why top-flight actors like Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman have flocked to his film work; he gives his casts a lot of meat to gnaw on, creating human-scaled narratives driven by character and dialogue.
But who will assay the school-aged protagonist leading the final piece of Zeller’s stage triptych remains to be seen. Based solely on the image on the cover of the for-sale script, I’m going to say Timothée Chalamet?
Published 16 Mar 2021
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