Natalie Portman, Julianne Moore Join Todd Haynes Drama ‘May December’

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Oscar-winning actors Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore are set to headline a new drama from acclaimed director Todd Haynes.

“May December” will see the heavyweights pair for the story of a Hollywood actress (Portman) who travels to the picturesque coast of Maine to study the real-life woman (Moore) she’s set to play in a film. The woman in question was the subject of a tabloid scandal two decades prior, for marrying a man 23 years her junior. As Moore’s character and her husband prepare to send their twin girls off to college, the family dynamic begins to unravel under Portman’s outsider lens.

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Samy Burch is writing the script, based on a story from herself and Alex Mechanik. The project is launching international sales via Rocket Science at this year’s Virtual Cannes Market. UTA Independent Film Group and CAA Media Finance are handling domestic sales.

Jessica Elbaum and Will Ferrell of Gloria Sanchez Productions (“Hustlers,” “Booksmart,” “Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar”) and Christine Vachon (“Shirley”) and Pam Koffler of Killer Films will produce alongside Portman and Sophie Mas under their MountainA banner. Shooting is set to commence in 2022.

“What so appealed to me about Samy Burch’s exceptional script was how it navigated potentially volatile subject matter with a kind of observational patience that allowed the characters in the story to be explored with uncommon subtlety,” said Haynes.

Haynes reunites with his “Far From Heaven” lead Moore for the sixth time on this project, and also counts a film in the official selection at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, the Apple Studios original documentary “The Velvet Underground.” He is represented by CAA and Cinetic Media.

Portman is a three-time Oscar nominee who took best actress in 2011 for “Black Swan.” She just completed production on Marvel’s “Thor: Love and Thunder” from Taika Waititi. She is repped by CAA and Agence Adequat.

Moore is a five-time Academy Award nominee with a best actress win for the 2015 drama “Still Alice.” She’s currently playing in the Apple original “Lisey’s Story” and will be seen later this year in Universal’s musical adaptation “Dear Evan Hansen.” Moore is repped by WME and Management 360;

Screenwriter Burch is represented by Grandview. Elbaum, Ferrell and Gloria Sanchez are represented by UTA, Mosaic and attorneys Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner & Klein.

Rocket Science’s Cannes slate includes Sean Penn’s “Flag Day,” the competition title which was just acquired by MGM, and Eva Husson’s “Mothering Sunday.” Recently announced projects include Zach Braff’s “A Good Person” with Florence Pugh and Morgan Freeman and the Robbie Williams biopic “Better Man” from director Michael Gracey.

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