is set to star in Oscar-winning Spotlight director Tom McCarthy’s newest directorial venture, Stillwater, as Variety first reported.
Damon will star as Bill, an oil-rig worker from Oklahoma who travels to Marseille to see his estranged daughter, who’s behind bars for a murder she says she didn’t commit. Faced with language barriers, cultural clashes and a very complicated legal system, Bill fights to free his daughter and, in the process, forms a bond with a local woman and her young daughter.
The Participant Media film will be executive produced by The Dictator’s Mari Jo Winkler-Ioffreda and Jeff Skoll, who also worked on Spotlight in addition to the global warming doc An Inconvenient Truth, the food industry documentary Food, Inc. and the Emma Stone-led drama The Help.
McCarthy co-wrote the script with frequent Jacques Audiard collaborator Thomas Bidegain, of Dheepan and The Sisters Brothers fame, and Noé Debré, who also worked on Dheepan, as well as the 2018 crime thriller The World Is Yours.
Participant, the company behind Spotlight, will produce and finance through Amblin Partners, while Focus Features will distribute in the U.S. and Universal Pictures International will take the brunt of international distribution.
Damon was in talks to star in Spotlight, but the deal fell through due to scheduling conflicts. It looks like he’ll finally get his chance to work with McCarthy now.
You can catch Damon next alongside Christian Bale in the drama Ford v. Ferrari, director James Mangold’s follow-up to the Oscar-nominated critical and commercial hit Logan.
McCarthy isn’t just known for Spotlight. He’s also recently developed and wrote several episodes of the Showtime series The Loudest Voice. He’s also won critical acclaim for his independent films The Station Agent, The Visitor and Win Win, among countless others in his ever-expanding CV.
Participant is just off the heels of its smash hit Green Book, which bagged a few Academy Awards, including the coveted Best Picture win. With a director like McCarthy at its helm, Stillwater is sure to be yet another major awards-season contender.