One of the most accomplished actors working in the world at the moment, Olivia Colman has worked on diverse projects ranging from surreal black comedies like Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster to period pieces like the hit Netflix show The Crown. Her latest film is called The Lost Daughter, an adaptation of an Elena Ferrante novel which is going to be the directorial debut of Maggie Gyllenhaal.
“I asked to direct it and to adapt it,” Gyllenhaal recalled. “To be completely honest, there was a part of me that was afraid. I had never directed before. I hadn’t adapted a book before either. She almost sensed my fear and said, ‘I will give you the rights to adapt it. But all of this will be null and void unless you direct it.’ There was no going to her saying, ‘Could Jane Campion do it? Could Lucrecia Martel do it?’ She said it has to be me, which I took as a real vote of confidence. I needed that at the time.”
While talking about Colman’s character, the first-time director said: “This is a woman who does some very aberrant, complicated, dark things, so I felt it was important she be played by someone who was fundamentally sane. I think there is a dipping your toe into madness that happens in parenthood, but to express that, the actress has to have a truly functional mind, which Olivia has.”
Adding, “I also wanted it to be a bit funny and have a lightness and a brightness and humour, and I thought Olivia was the perfect person to explore that with. Her work is very different from mine, so I was compelled by what would she do with something like this. I couldn’t even begin to imagine and, in fact, every single take was always a surprise.”
Netflix recently acquired the rights for the film in the UK, Germany and Benelux with a working release date of December 31. The Lost Daughter is on everyone’s radar after it won the Best Screenplay award at the Venice Film Festival with Gyllenhaal picking up a Rising Star Director Award at another festival as well.
Watch the brand new trailer for The Lost Daughter below.