First-time feature writer-director Ned Benson is taking a cue from acclaimed novelist Evan S. Connell, by telling the same story of a couple twice, one time from each perspective, and he's landed a pair of fast-rising stars for the project.
Jessica Chastain and Joel Edgerton will star in "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: His" and "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Hers," which will chronicle the struggles of a New York City couple, he's a restaurant owner, she's a returning college student. While the stories will of course be linked, the intent is to have them work as stand-alone films.
"We have to make both films work on their own, both for the buyers but also for the audiences," said Kirk D’Amico, CEO of Myriad Pictures, in a press release. "Together these films will describe a fully, more complete look at these characters and their lives."
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In 1958, Connell released his debut novel, "Mrs. Bridge," a portrait of a woman trapped in WW II suburban tedium. In 1969, he delivered "Mr. Bridge," which told essentially the same story from the husband's point of view. In 1990, Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman starred in the Merchant-Ivory adaptation, "Mr. and Mrs. Bridge," which combined the two books into one film. That never made sense to us, because the very point of the books, both of which are excellent, was to counter the spouses' POV. If Benson gets this right, it could be brilliant.