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Carey Mulligan Eyeing Lead Role in James Marsh-Directed Thriller ‘Nancy and Danny’

Written by on August 15, 2012 

It’s a sad thought, but unless Joel and Ethan Coen‘s Inside Llewyn Davis receives a last-minute 2012 push, the news of The Great Gatsby‘s delay means that we’ll have to wait for our calendars to change years until we next see Carey Mulligan on the big screen. It’s unfortunate, too, because 2011’s one-two punch of Drive and Shame — the latter, in my opinion, representing career-best work to date — surely did wonders for her popularity, and a successful late-year turn in Baz Luhrmann‘s 3D extravaganza would’ve certainly kept the wheels turning.

But even now, with several badges of honor under her sleeve, Mulligan remains reluctant to attach herself to newly-announced projects without scrupulous consideration, so it’s with great intrigue that I report her personal interest in the starring role of Nancy and Danny, a small-town story about “a money-hungry woman (Mulligan) whose big-city dreams failed.” The logline’s second sentence: “In order to land a high school crush, she uses a hapless man as a pawn in a get-rich-quick scheme that quickly goes wrong.”

The THR exclusive, which describes Nancy and Danny as “in the vein” of Gus Van Sant‘s Nicole Kidman-starring To Die For, is quick to point out that Mulligan “pursued the part” herself, and that may have something to do with the attached helmer: James Marsh, of the Oscar-winning documentary Man on Wire. More related to this project, however, is Marsh‘s history as a narrative filmmaker — back in 2009, he directed the second of the Red Riding films, and this year, his Shadow Dancer premiered to an extremely interesting response at the Sundance Film Festival. (You can find our video review of Shadow Dancer here.)

The screenwriter of Nancy and Danny, Brad Ingelsby, also carries some pedigree with him — in addition to being attached to Scott Cooper‘s Crazy Heart follow-up, Out of the Furnace, he’s earned multiple big-figure sums in the recent script-buying market, and has also been tapped to pen the American remake of The Raid.

Combining all that information together, it’s easy to understand why Mulligan would want the opportunity to jump on-board, and it’s even easier to get excited about the project’s potential. First thing’s first, though: I want to see Shadow Dancer.

Are you as intrigued by Nancy and Danny as I am? Do you think Mulligan would fit well into the role?

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