Sam Mendes Might Direct Carey Mulligan in 'On Chesil Beach'
Another casualty of MGM. Instead of directing the 23rd James Bond movie, Sam Mendes has moved on to a few interesting projects on stage and screen instead. He'll first be working on directing a West End (then Broadway) musical of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but before that show hits stages in late 2011, he'll direct another new feature film. Deadline says Mendes is "planning" on next directing an adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel On Chesil Beach with actress Carey Mulligan interest in a lead role. It's all preliminary with most parties only "in discussions." Focus Features is developing and McEwan is adapting his own work.
On Chesil Beach, first published in 2007, takes place in the UK in 1963 and revolves around two repressed virgins in their early twenties whose attempt to consummate ends badly. Their futile attempt at lovemaking leads to doubt and recriminations. Wow, that sounds very sexually intense, should be very interesting to see Mendes direct this. Apparently he is so set on directing this next, he's already informed Disney that he won't direct The Great and Powerful Oz. He is still attached to the next Bond, whenever MGM gets back on track. This also may mean that Mulligan has passed on Fincher's Girl with the Dragoon Tattoo, but we're not sure.
This seems like it could turn out great, especially with Mendes, as he's been dabbling in relationships quite a bit recently with Revolutionary Road and Away We Go, but will be getting a bit steamier with this one. The story also features one of those split "flash-back" narratives, kind of like in Atonement, where we'll see the relationship between these lovers at different points in their life. If you're a big fan of Sam Mendes or in love with Carey Mulligan like I am, this should be some great news. We'll keep you updated on anything we hear!