Acclaimed filmmaker Darren Aronofsky has announced his next project following 2017’s Mother! will be The Whale, a decidedly in-character, bleak and surreal drama. Purveyor of bleak and surreal dramas A24 will distribute the film, which is set to star Brendan Fraser.
Award-winning playwright Samuel D Hunter adapts his 2012 play of the same name for the screenplay. The Whale tells the story of a “six hundred pound recluse” living in Idaho, stricken with a debilitating eating disorder and wasting away in his solitude. In an attempt to connect with his estranged daughter, the the man finds a “last chance at redemption,” with the play underlining “beauty in the most unexpected places.”
Hunter praised the project, calling The Whale “deeply personal,” and expressing interest in it “[having] the chance to reach a wider audience,” as well as respect for Aronofsky as a filmmaker.
Given Aronofsky’s propensity for dwelling on deeply-visceral subject matter like the addiction in Requiem for a Dream or the violence of The Wrestler, The Whale‘s eating disorders and body dysmorphia sounds… right up his alley. One can only hope Brendan Fraser avoids any method acting too strenuous in preparation for the gargantuan role. Lately he can be seen on DC’s Doom Patrol series, which is currently filming its third season.
With A24 distributing worldwide and Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures working the project, the film seems a sure bet. Expect to hear more on The Whale as Aronofsky and A24 ramp up production in the coming months, pandemic-willing.