Nine long years separated Lynne Ramsay's second feature film, Morvern Callar, from last year's critically acclaimed We Need to Talk About Kevin, but the Scottish director can perhaps look forward to a faster turnaround for her next project, after Natalie Portman has signed up for western Jane Got a Gun.
Portman's star has rarely been higher in the Hollywood firmament after winning a best actress Oscar for 2010's Black Swan and it was recently revealed that users of IMDb view her profile more than any other actor. Jane Got a Gun also benefits from a screenplay by Brian Duffield, which made the 2011 Black List of the best unproduced scripts in Hollywood. Portman is down to play the lead, a farmer's wife whose outlaw husband returns home bloodied and near death after his gang turn on him. When the miscreants reappear to finish the job, Jane must enlist the help of an old flame to defend her life and home. Portman will also take a producer's credit.
The film is currently at the centre of a bidding war in Cannes, where it is being touted to investors. Ramsay is also planning an ambitious (though low-budget) science fiction-themed adaptation of Moby-Dick, though it must be said the Portman project looks like it may stand a better chance of reaching cinemas.
Portman is also due to appear in the next two films by Terrence Malick, another maverick director previously known for taking his time with film projects. These are currently titled Lawless and Knight of Cups.
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