If the wildly positive response out of Cannes is to be believed (and one should always be skeptical of Cannes “ovation” stories), Todd Haynes might be back in the awards season race with May December, his dramedy led by Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore. But Haynes is already looking forward to what comes next and taking on a new challenge, namely telling a gay love story with Oscar-winning actor Joaquin Phoenix.
So Haynes has been telling any outlet that’ll listen about this new project they’re developing together. It’s an NC-17 period romance centered on two gay men. Here is what he told Indiewire…
“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. The next film is a feature that’s 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.”
Raymond most recently worked with Reichardt on the Michelle Williams art world drama, Showing Up, which is in theaters now.
This would be the first time Phoenix and Haynes have worked together. It’s probably not a coincidence that Phoenix is dating Rooney Mara, Haynes’ Carol star. She may have felt Haynes was the right filmmaker to bring this story to, and judging by what we’ve heard so far, she’s probably right.
It’s way too early to start speculating on much of anything at this point, except for one thing. If this project comes together as intended, it’s pretty much guaranteed to be an Oscars darling, so best to keep our eyes on it.