Two-time Oscar nominee Viggo Mortensen will man both sides of the camera for Falling, an intimate family drama that will constitute the accomplished actor’s feature film directorial debut. Mortensen wrote the film’s screenplay and will play one of its two leading roles in addition to producing and directing, per Deadline.
Falling is described as an intimate family drama in which Mortensen portrays John Petersen, who lives in Southern California with his male partner Eric and their adopted daughter Monica. John’s father Willis (Lance Henriksen, Aliens) is a farmer whose behavior and attitudes belong in a bygone era. When Willis travels to Los Angeles to stay indefinitely with John and his family while searching for somewhere to retire, their two worlds collide. The film also stars Sverrir Gudnason (The Girl in the Spider’s Web), who will presumably play John’s partner.
Mortensen’s enduring screen career has cooled off in recent years after a torrid stretch in the 2000s that saw him rocket to prominence by starring in Peter Jackson’s titantic Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as a pair of acclaimed David Cronenberg films, A History of Violence and Eastern Promises, with the latter performance earning him an Oscar nod. However, he recently earned his second Best Actor nomination with a widely lauded turn in 2016 family dramedy Captain Fantastic, and is now poised to mine that vein further in Falling while also making the exciting move into the director’s chair.
“The industry has always regarded Viggo as a really soulful artist,” said HanWay Films managing director Gabrielle Stewart in a statement. “He is a talented photographer, poet and musician. His screenplay for Falling is a powerful, well-observed family drama. We are thrilled to be part of his promising and exciting directorial debut.”
UTA Independent Film Group will oversee the U.S. sale of Falling, while HanWay Films will sell the film internationally, launching it at the American Film Market (Oct. 31). Producing alongside Mortensen is Daniel Bekerman of Scythia Films.
Mortensen will next appear in Peter Farrelly-directed drama Green Book (Nov. 21) opposite Emmy nominee Linda Cardellini and Oscar winner Mahershala Ali.
Revisit our 2016 interview with Mortensen here and brush up on the actor’s many roles right here.