Young director Xavier Dolan continually provokes a divisive stance with his lush, personal films, but even his detractors must admit he knows how to stay insanely prolific. With his third directorial effort, “Laurence Anyways” readying for its Cannes Film Festival premiere next week, Dolan seeks to maintain that reputation with news of his follow-up film already in the pipeline.
Dolan has announced plans to adapt Michel Marc Bouchard‘s play, “Tom à la Ferme,” which marks the second film adaptation for Bouchard, following 1996’s “Lilies” (helmed by John Greyson), and the first for Dolan. The director fell in love with the play after he attended a Montreal staging last year, and approached the internationally renowned Bouchard about who would be directing the film version. When Bouchard said he had no idea, Dolan kindly notified him that he’d be doing it then, actually. Cheeky. Evidently his forthrightness paid off though, because the two have been collaborating on the script ever since.
The story of Bouchard’s play follows a man, Tom, who is in the grip of grief and depression following the death of his lover. When he meets the family of the deceased, it is revealed the mother was not aware of her son’s sexual orientation, or his relationship with Tom either, for that matter. As Tom struggles over whether to keep the truth hidden or reveal all, he is threatened by the brother in the family with grave repercussions if the truth is not concealed forever.
It’s completely understandable why Dolan would be attracted to Bouchard’s play, since themes of gay identity, relationship dynamics, and repression have dominated his initial filmography, from his (sadly still unavailable stateside) debut film “I Killed My Mother,” to the gender-swapping “Laurence Anyways.” His voice as a filmmaker only strengthens with each new film as well, so hopefully a step away from his own writing will prove Dolan’s singular voice as a director even further.
Before ‘Tom’ though, you can catch Dolan’s film “Laurence Anyways” first, which hits Canada and France this month. A U.S. release has not yet been announced. [via Twitch]