I am about to make many of you feel very old…..Dakota Fanning turned 20 earlier this year. The I Am Sam actor is probably best known for her early screen work, although she has built up a resume of intriguing art-house films as of late, including Night Moves and Amy Berg’s upcoming drama Every Secret Thing. However, mainstream audiences have not seen her in a while. That will all likely change very soon though, as Fanning is now attached to the adaptation of Philip Roth’s American Pastoral, in the role of Merry Levov.
American Pastoral is frequently touted by many readers (and this writer) as one of the greatest American novels. The modern classic from Philip Roth follows the life and times of Seymour “Swede” Levov, a high-school athlete who seems to be living the American dream, with a beautiful wife, home and job he inherited from his dad. However, when Swede’s daughter, Merry, becomes a revolutionary during the days of Vietnam and commits an act of terrorism, his life begins to unravel. Ewan McGregor and Jennifer Connelly have already signed on to play Swede and his wife, Dawn.
American Pastoral is one of the most acclaimed novels in contemporary literature and won the Pulitzer Prize. The good news is that director Phillip Noyce has a good track record with adapting excellent novels to film (The Quiet American, Patriot Games). His next effort, The Giver, comes out August 15 and fits that same bill. Screenwriter John Romano recently adapted The Lincoln Lawyer to the screen, as well.
Meanwhile, Fanning has always been a fascinating actor to watch. Her stellar turns in The Runaways and Man on Fire show that she has the intensity and the intelligence to play such a fierce character like Merry.
American Pastoral, which is produced by Lakeshore Entertainment, is slated to begin production in March. Keep an eye on this project, which given the novel’s pedigree, could be slated as a late-year awards contender in 2015.
Source: The Wrap