Despite work recently completed at a faster-than-you-realized pace (four movies over the past three years!), Lasse Hallström does not appear to be slowing down. Some five months after Twitter favorite Salmon Fishing in the Yemen earned an illustrious Golden Globe nomination, Deadline tell us the Swedish helmer has found a new point of focus: The Hundred-Foot Journey, a DreamWorks-backed title gearing up to start overseas production later this year.
Of further interest is the has also alleged that Helen Mirren is, if not fully attached, a strong candidate for the role of Madame Mallory. (A fall start would, of course, mean that casting deals need to heat up before long.) Steven Knight (Hummingbird, Eastern Promises) is adapting a novel by Richard C. Morais; Steven Spielberg will produce alongside Oprah Winfrey and Juliet Blake. Good news for DreamWorks and the financiers, Reliance: the main characters’ nationality “satisfies an ambition to find a film with relevance to the Indian market.”
You can read a synopsis of the original text below (via Amazon):
“Born above his grandfather’s modest restaurant in Mumbai, Hassan first experienced life through intoxicating whiffs of spicy fish curry, trips to the local markets, and gourmet outings with his mother. But when tragedy pushes the family out of India, they console themselves by eating their way around the world, eventually settling in Lumière, a small village in the French Alps.
The boisterous Haji family takes Lumière by storm. They open an inexpensive Indian restaurant opposite an esteemed French relais—that of the famous chef Madame Mallory—and infuse the sleepy town with the spices of India, transforming the lives of its eccentric villagers and infuriating their celebrated neighbor. Only after Madame Mallory wages culinary war with the immigrant family, does she finally agree to mentor young Hassan, leading him to Paris, the launch of his own restaurant, and a slew of new adventures.
The Hundred-Foot Journey is about how the hundred-foot distance between a new Indian kitchen and a traditional French one can represent the gulf between different cultures and desires.”
Does this seem like a good direction for Hallström to head in?