Originally set to team Darren Aronofsky and Angelina Jolie, it was back in January that the trio of Susanne Bier, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper boarded a new iteration of “Serena,” the adaptation of Ron Rash‘s period-drama novel. The project looks to be coming together quickly though having now added Rhys Ifans and Toby Jones to its cast in gearing for a March shoot.
The fascinating tale centers on a man named George Pemberton (Cooper) and his new bride, Serena (Lawrence), as they set out to depression-era North Carolina to create a timber empire. Their successful, ruthless reign in the mountains becomes complicated when Serena discovers her inability to bear children, setting her on a vengeful path against George’s illegitimate son. Ifans will play a vicious Appalachian guide who becomes Serena’s muscle after she saves his life while Jones plays Sheriff McDowell, whose apparently on the the timber baron’s tail throughout.
The adpatation looks to be shaping up very well with strong source material and a talented cast in tow. It’ll also top off what already looks to be a banner year for both Ifans and Jones — the Welshman is set to feature in “Five-Year Engagement” and “The Amazing Spider-Man” as the villain The Lizard with his English counterpart due for appearances in “Snow White And The Huntsman” and “The Hunger Games,” which is of course led by his co-star here, Lawrence.
Lensing on “Serena” is slated to begin late March in the Czech Republic with 2929 Entertainment and Chockstone Pictures producing. [Variety]