Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, co-stars in the upcoming David O. Russell film, “The Silver Linings Playbook” (November 12), will reteam for “Serena.” Based on Ron Rash’s 2008 novel, the film is set in 1929 North Carolina and follows George and Serena Pemberton, ambitious newlyweds with their hearts set on a timber empire. Says NYMag, “Their ambition is all-consuming and dangerous — neither is afraid to kill or destroy anyone who opposes them — but they’re turned against each other when Serena finds she can’t bear children and then launches a deadly vendetta against her husband’s illegitimate son,” and they relate the role to Lady Macbeth. The best news is that Danish filmmaker Susanne Bier (whose “In A Better World” won the 2011 Oscar for Best Foreign Language film) will direct.
Angelina Jolie was once linked to a “Serena” adaptation with Darren Aronofsky, but she’s getting choosier about projects. “Cleopatra” (with David Fincher), Disney’s “Maleficent” and “Salt 2” seem to be her higher priorities; it will be a while before she gets behind the camera again. “Silver Linings” offers Lawrence the chance to return to her grittier “Winter’s Bone” roots, after transitioning her indie cred to two franchises, “X-Men” (number two is on its way) and “The Hunger Games” (March 23). Ditto for Cooper, who has been trying to reel in his “Hangover” fame with projects like “Playbook” and Derek Cianfrance’s “The Place Beyond The Pines.” While CBS Films scooped up Cooper’s Sundance closing night entry “The Words” early in the fest, later reviews were not stellar.