Emma Stone transforms into a “Frankenstein”-esque lead for Yorgos Lanthimos’ latest film “Poor Things.”
Stone and Lanthimos continue their partnership following “The Favourite” and short film “Bleat.” Stone is also confirmed to be cast in Lanthimos’ “AND” feature.
For “Poor Things,” Stone leads a Frankenstein-inspired tale of second chances. Per the official synopsis, the film centers on the incredible tale and fantastical evolution of Bella Baxter (Stone), a young woman brought back to life by the brilliant and unorthodox scientist Dr. Godwin Baxter (Willem Dafoe). Under Baxter’s protection, Bella is eager to learn. Hungry for the worldliness she is lacking, Bella runs off with Duncan Wedderburn (Mark Ruffalo), a slick and debauched lawyer, on a whirlwind adventure across the continents. Free from the prejudices of her times, Bella grows steadfast in her purpose to stand for equality and liberation.
“Poor Things” is based on Scottish author Alasdair Gray’s novel about a woman who drowns herself to escape her abusive husband and is resurrected with the brain of her unborn child. The film is written by “The Great” showrunner Tony McNamara, who also penned Lanthimos’ last film “The Favourite.”
Ramy Youssef, Christopher Abbott, Margaret Qualley, and Jerrod Carmichael also star. Lanthimos praised “Poor Things” actor Dafoe’s commitment to the role, saying, “That’s what you want from actors, to want to be part of it in any way.”
Lanthimos re-teams with editor Yorgos Mavropsaridis, with “Poor Things” produced by Lanthimos, Stone, Ed Guiney, Ali Herting, Andrew Lowe, and Dave McCary. Ildiko Kemeny, Kasia Malipan, and David Minkowski serve as co-producers.
Lanthimos previously told The Guardian in 2018 that he hoped to push Stone further as an actress. “I don’t think she’s out of her comfort zone yet – she has a lot of room there,” the “Killing of a Sacred Deer” actor said. “I’m not sure how I knew that, but I kind of knew it. She was very confident from the beginning – physically, she was immediately on it from the rehearsals.”
He added of helming provocative films with central female leads, “I can’t pretend that I thought we need more women represented in a certain way, it was just an instinctive thing. I was interested in that which I hadn’t seen very often.”
“Poor Things” premieres September 8 in theaters from Searchlight. Check out the teaser below.