I’ve devoted a lot of ink in past articles about those underrated actors who, by their very presence, automatically can make even the worst movie a least semi-tolerable. You know the rogues gallery of thespians I’m speaking of: John C. Reilly, Casey Siemaszko, Penelope Ann Miller, Toby Jones, Ann Dowd, Peter Stormare, Octavia Spencer, Tilda Swinton, Oliver Platt, Richard Panebianco, Giancarlo Esposito and Dominic Monaghan are but a few of the underrated ensemble players who can automatically turn a film into a “must-see” type of event. To this woefully truncated list I would also not hesitate to add Oscar nominated actor Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense), one of the best journeyman actors to come down the pike in eons. And now, according to our The Pallbearer-lovin’ muchachos over at The Hollywood Reporter, Collette has been tapped to make her directorial debut in the upcoming feature film Writers and Lovers.
Writers and Lovers is an adaptation of the best-selling novel by Lily King and is about a woman named Casey Peabody. Casey it seems is a wannabe writer in the Boston of the 1990s who, while battling frequent bouts of unemployment (a typical writer malady; trust me.) falls for two very different men. This all occurs whilst mourning the loss of her mother, proving definitively that the Universe can be a head-scratcher indeed.
Toni Collette of Knives Out and Little Miss Sunshine fame will direct the adaptation and will also serve as one-half of the screenwriting duo behind the script for the feature; joining Collette on writing chores will be master scribe Nick Payne (The Crown). Topic Studios is behind this production. The uber-versatile Ms. Collette will also serve as one of the film’s producers via her production house Vocab Films.
In a press release, Collette said that “I have been waiting to direct for quite some time but have been a bit busy with my day job. I couldn’t be more thrilled to be bringing Lily King’s beautiful, funny, moving novel to filmic life. It’s an empowering story that speaks to me as a woman and an artist. It’s ultimately about coming to know and believe in oneself. This is not always an easy feat, but the most important journey any person can take. It inspires me on so many levels.”
Further details such as production start date, casting and an ultimate release date have yet to be announced. Stay tuned and pop open some champagne and raise a glass in congrats for an extraordinarily talented actor finally getting a-go behind the camera. Well deserved, Ms. Collette!