While there’s a great deal to appreciate in Wonderstruck, Dark Waters, and The Velvet Underground, it’s safe to say Todd Haynes has earned his most significant acclaim since Carol with May December, which premiered this past weekend at the Cannes Film Festival. One can read our review of the drama, starring Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore, here, and now we have an update on the next film the director is planning.
Haynes revealed that he’s looking to team with Joaquin Phoenix for a gay drama set nearly a century ago. “There’s another movie I want to do in early 2024,” he tells Les Inrockuptibles. “It’s a project that Joaquin Phoenix brought to me, and it’s set in the 1930s. A love story between two men, based on an original, very audacious scenario. This is, I believe, his first gay role. I am very excited about this project!”
While there are plenty of valid interpretations that The Master‘s Freddie Quell is queer, it’s exciting to hear Haynes will direct the actor in his first explicitly gay role. The film, which will be NC-17, will also feature Phoenix opposite a Native American actor, who is yet to be cast. As we await further details, more from May December has been unveiled, including the first clip and a 40-minute Cannes press conference, during which Julianne Moore had some kind words for her director.
“Todd’s just the best. I think I said this to you, too, Natalie before we started working. I was like, ‘Todd does all the work for you. It’s so relaxing,'” she said. “It’s so wonderful to walk into one of his films because you’re literally held by the frame. You know where you are in the story by how he’s framed you. It frees me so much as an actor to know that he’s done all this work. [Laughs]. But it’s true. He’s so meticulous with his storytelling, visually and emotionally and linguistically if he’s written the script, that you’re just like, ‘Great. I start here and end up there,’ but he’s done it. He’s done the work emotionally and intellectually and it’s just an absolute joy. He’s such an extraordinary talent. I think we all reveled in this experience with him.”
Watch below as we await impending distribution news.