It’s been nearly two years since we’ve heard anything about “Genius,” so we’ll bring you back up to speed. The long-developing project has moved in fits and starts over the years, getting a boost in 2012 when Colin Firth and Michael Fassbender signed up for the lead roles, with promises of production starting in early 2014. Well, we’re in early 2014 and it looks like the wheels on this one are turning again, with another big star apparently joining.
According to The New York Daily News, they caught up with Firth at “The Railway Man” premiere and he told the paper that he’d next be collaborating with co-star Nicole Kidman on “Genius” (they’ve already got another movie, the thriller “Before I Go To Sleep,” in the can).
The film is an adaptation of the National Book Award-winning non-fiction work “Max Perkins: Editor of Genius” by A. Scott Berg, and focuses on Perkins’ (Firth) relationship with the (excellent, underappreciated) author Thomas Wolfe (Fassbender). A writer who poured words onto the page, Wolfe worked with and battled Perkins over the length of his books, with the editor cutting 90,000 words from his first novel “Look Homeward, Angel” (later restored in an updated version of the book, “O Lost!“). In time, Wolfe became resentful of what he perceived was Perkins receiving far too much credit for his work. But on his deathbed at the age of 37, Wolfe penned a tribute to Perkins who certainly helped make his career. Here’s the official synopsis:
GENIUS centers on the real-life relationship between literary giant Thomas Wolfe and renowned editor Max Perkins (Firth).
Finding fame and critical success at a young age, Wolfe is a blazing talent with a larger-than-life personality to match. Perkins is one of the most respected and well-known literary editors of all time, discovering such iconic novelists as F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway.
Wolfe and Perkins develop a tender, complex friendship. Transformative and irrepressible, this friendship will change the lives of these brilliant, but very different men forever.
There’s no word yet on what Kidman’s role might be.
She’s likely too young to play Wolfe’s romantic interest and muse As our readers point out, Kidman could be playing Aline Berstein, Wolfe’s romantic interest and muse. Guess we’ll find out soon enough. Michael Grandage will make his directorial debut on the project.