“Ghandi” and “Schindler’s List” thespian Ben Kingsley is no stranger to having his name attached to more than a few projects at a time and with his supporting role in this month’s release of Martin Scorsese’s fairytale “Hugo,” and a plum role in Sacha Baron Cohen‘s “The Dictator” on the way for next spring, Kingsley is as busy as always. So it should come as no surprise that he’s now heading up a pretty impressive cast for the big-screen adaptation of the Henrik Ibsen play “A Doll’s House.”
Variety reports that Kingsley will join Julian Sands, Jena Malone and Michele Martin for “Dadgum, Texas” director Charles Huddleston’s modern day adaptation of the play. Huddleston co-wrote the script with Michele Martin, one he tells Variety modernizes the play without removing any of its relevancy. “Ibsen’s tale of a family unraveling in the face of the debt crisis is as relevant now as it was a 130 years ago,” Huddleston said. “By bringing it into today’s world I’m going to heighten the characters’ emotional turmoil and send them on a frightening journey where their deceptions and financial decisions threaten not only their social standing but their lives.”
Kingsley is set to play Dr. Rank, a friend of the play’s lead character Nora Helmer (Martin), who is a naive housewife that’s constantly picked on by her overbearing banking executive husband for her ludicrous spending. Malone plays her friend Christine Linde who is torn between her loyalty to Nora and her own well being, with Sands as Nathan Gynt, a seedy money lender. This will now all be set against the backdrop of today’s recession.
It’s good to see Kingsley working in films that have the potential to be genuinely interesting, because as many know he’s spent the better part of the past decade in mindless exercises in futility like “Lucky Number Slevin,” “The Love Guru,” and “Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time.” Though we won’t discount the fact that he had some decent turns in Jonathan Levine’s “The Wackness” and obviously “Shutter Island,” and remains a certifiable legend. This one is set to shoot in January, and it smells like a fall festival run is most certainly imminent.