The acclaimed director of Atonement and last year’s Darkest Hour, Joe Wright, will direct an adaptation of New York Times bestseller The Woman in the Window. Tracy Letts, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning August, Osage County, will write the script, with Oscar-winning producer Scott Rudin and Eli Bush producing. Fox 2000 is behind the film, according to Variety.
The early 2018 novel by A.J. Finn centers on a young reclusive doctor, Anna Fox, who lives alone in her New York City brownstone. She spends her days and nights drinking heavily, rewatching old classic films, reminiscing about better times and occasionally spying on the neighbors. Then, a family of three moves into the house next to her: a mother, a father and a teenage son. Anna watches the seemingly perfect family in a very The Girl on the Train fashion until she witnesses something bad, something she should not have seen. Anna’s world begins to crumble, revealing shocking secrets hidden from time and leaving the audience to wonder what is real, what is imagined, who is in danger, who is in control and who to trust.
As surprising as it is that Wright has never been nominated for an Academy Award for directing, the British director is in much demand and for good reason, following Darkest Hour’s success. Wright’s latest feature won Gary Oldman his Best Actor Academy Award this year and snagged a Best Picture nomination to boot. Wright’s previous films have also tended to rack up Oscar nominations: Atonement snagged a Best Picture nod and a Best Supporting Actress nod for Saoirse Ronan, while Pride and Prejudice gave Keira Knightley her first Oscar nomination for Best Actress and Anna Karenina won an Oscar for Costume Design.
No word yet on who’s to play The Woman in the Window’s leading lady, but Wright has worked with Knightley several times, so perhaps this could prove to be their next collaboration. This could be a nice change for Knightley, given her usual period dramas. In an interview with Variety during Sundance this year, Knightley spoke to why she prefers period pieces to contemporary projects: “I always find something distasteful in the way women are portrayed, whereas I’ve always found very inspiring characters offered to me in historical pieces.” With Wright at the helm of a contemporary piece, she would surely be in good hands.
Producers Rudin and Bush both recently produced the Oscar-nominated Lady Bird. Rudin won an Oscar for producing No Country For Old Men and remains one of Hollywood’s leading producers, with over 130 credits under his belt. Wright is also attached to direct the film Stoner with Casey Affleck and Tommy Lee Jones, and it remains unclear whether he will begin that project or The Woman in the Window first.