Todd Haynes teases his next gay romance starring Joaquin Phoenix will be an NC-17 film

Todd Haynes has teased that his next gay romance, starring Joaquin Phoenix, will be an NC-17-rated film.

While in attendance at the Cannes Film Festival in support of his romance drama May December, led by Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore, the director revealed that he has a variety of projects in the works.

“I have more features planned. I have also episodic projects coming that are planned, that are really exciting. I’m going back to work with Kate Winslet with something she brought me for HBO,” Haynes told IndieWire.

He went on to discuss his next feature film, which is “an original script that I developed with Joaquin Phoenix based on some thoughts and ideas he brought to me”.

“We basically wrote with him as a story writer. Me and Jon Raymond and Joaquin share the story credit. And we hope to be shooting it beginning early next year. It’s a gay love story set in 1930s LA,” Haynes said.

Haynes promised that their movie will contain adult subject matter.

“This will be an NC-17 film,” he said. “Joaquin was pushing me further and going, ‘No, let’s go further.’”

NC-17 is the highest rating given to movies by the Motion Picture Association in the US, restricting any person under the age of 17 from seeing it in cinemas.

Todd Haynes and Joaquin Phoenix (Getty Images)
Todd Haynes and Joaquin Phoenix (Getty Images)

It is given to films that the MPA believes most parents would consider “patently adult” and unsuitable for minors under 18.

Haynes is an openly gay director known for exploring LGBTQ+ themes in several of his movies, including Carol, Poison and Velvet Goldmine.

His 2015 queer romance Carol, starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara as two women who develop a romance was a major hit among audiences and critics. The film earned six Oscar nominations, including a Best Actress nod for Blanchett. The award went to Brie Larson for her role in 2015’s Room.