Netflix has announced a December theatrical and streaming release for Maggie Gyllenhaal’s feature directorial debut “The Lost Daughter,” adapted from the Elena Ferrante novel of the same name. The movie will be having its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, where it will debut in competition alongside the likes of Pablo Larrain’s “Spencer,” Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog,” and Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Hand of God.” The latter two titles are also Netflix releases.
The official synopsis for “The Lost Daughter” from Netflix reads: “Alone on a seaside vacation, Leda (Olivia Colman) becomes consumed with a young mother and daughter as she watches them on the beach. Unnerved by their compelling relationship, (and their raucous and menacing extended family), Leda is overwhelmed by her own memories of the terror, confusion and intensity of early motherhood. An impulsive act shocks Leda into the strange and ominous world of her own mind, where she is forced to face the unconventional choices she made as a young mother and their consequences.”
Starring opposite Oscar winner Colman is Jessie Buckley, Dakota Johnson, Ed Harris, Peter Sarsgaard, Dagmara Dominczyk, Paul Mescal, Jack Farthing, Robyn Elwell, Ellie Blake, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Panos Koronis, Alexandros Mylonas, Alba Rohrwacher, Nikos Poursanidis, and Athena Martin.
Gyllenhaal told Vanity Fair she originally sought to make her feature directorial debut with an adaptation of Ferrante’s “The Days of Abandonment,” but the rights to the novel were already taken. Then the writer-actress-director got her hands on “The Lost Daughter,” and she said reading the novel felt like “some secret piece of my experience as a mother, as a lover, as a woman in the world was being spoken out loud for the first time.” Gyllenhaal spent a month composing a letter to Ferrante to ask for the rights, and the author gave them to her on the one condition that Gyllenhaal direct the movie.
While production was originally set for New Jersey, the pandemic forced Gyllenhaal to move both the film’s setting and shooting location to Greece. Of making her first feature film in the director’s chair, Gyllenhaal said, “I have never felt more alive and in the current of my life than I felt as a director.”
“There are many interesting women who don’t agree with me on this, but I do think that there is such a thing as women’s filmmaking—and I’m compelled by what that means,” Gyllenhaal said of her directing debut. “And I don’t think we’ve had an opportunity to really explore what that means.”
Netflix will open “The Lost Daughter” in select theaters December 17, followed by a streaming launch December 31. Check out more first look photos from the drama below.
YANNIS DRAKOULIDIS/NETFLIX © 2021
NETFLIX © 2021
NETFLIX © 2021
NETFLIX © 2021
YANNIS DRAKOULIDIS/NETFLIX © 2021.
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