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Keira Knightley Will Lead ‘The Other Typist’; ‘Love & Mercy’ Adds Elizabeth Banks

Written by on June 26, 2013 

Finally, a movie that understands struggles of the mind-to-fingers-to-words creative flow. As is told in THR, Keira Knightley has, for the first time in her career, taken both a star and producer position with The Other Typist, a (surprise!) period piece which, certainly due in no small part to this involvement, has been secured for distribution by Fox Searchlight. It’s early days on this one, but we have some key into what’s going on with the narrative thread.

Yes, the magic of adaptations. Knightley and Searchlight took interest in a recently published tome from Suzanne Rindell, which is earning comparisons to Hitchcock, Gatsby, and Patricia Highsmith. Intrigued? An Amazon synopsis could expand your interest further; it at least sells the project as something more than another tale of star-crossed lovers in a far-gone time:

“Rose Baker seals men’s fates. With a few strokes of the keys that sit before her, she can send a person away for life in prison. A typist in a New York City Police Department precinct, Rose is like a high priestess. Confessions are her job. It is 1923, and while she may hear every detail about shootings, knifings, and murders, as soon as she leaves the interrogation room she is once again the weaker sex, best suited for filing and making coffee.

This is a new era for women, and New York is a confusing place for Rose. Gone are the Victorian standards of what is acceptable. All around her women bob their hair, they smoke, they go to speakeasies. Yet prudish Rose is stuck in the fading light of yesteryear, searching for the nurturing companionship that eluded her childhood. When glamorous Odalie, a new girl, joins the typing pool, despite her best intentions Rose falls under Odalie’s spell. As the two women navigate between the sparkling underworld of speakeasies by night and their work at the station by day, Rose is drawn fully into Odalie’s high-stakes world. And soon her fascination with Odalie turns into an obsession from which she may never recover.”

Noted, too, in THR is that Elizabeth Banks will help fill out the cast of Beach Boys biopic Love & Mercy. We’ve reported on this one multiple times, now, the project revolving around the band’s frontman, Brian Wilson, and his journey from young genius to an older, more frayed man. Paul Dano plays him at the peak, John Cusack plays him in the doldrums, and Paul Giamatti is the psychiatrist who gives him a questionable treatment. Entering the swing of things, Banks is signed to play Wilson’s wife, Melinda Ledbetter.

In its “off-the-beaten-path” approach to the typical musical biopic, producer Bill Pohlad will helm from a script by The Messenger and Rampart helmer Oren Moverman, while Atticus Ross (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Social Network) will compose a soundscape. Love & Mercy will roll cameras this August.

It’s also said that Banks has taken a role in writer-director Sara Colangelo‘s debut feature, Little Accidents, adapted from a 2010 short. Co-starring Boyd Holbrook (A Walk Among the Tombstones, Terrence Malick‘s untitled drama), it’s to feature her as “a woman whose life spirals downward after a town is left devastated following a mining accident that kills 12 men and finds her son missing.”

Little Accidents is scheduled to shoot next month.

Do Typist and Love sound like good choices for Knightley and Banks, respectively?

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