Monday, July 03, 2006

John Malkovich to lead in Disgrace

THE Australian film-making team of writer-producer Anna-Maria Monticelli and director Steve Jacobs, together with Emile Sherman, son of South African-born Australians Gene and Brian Sherman, has secured actor John Malkovich to play the lead in the movie Disgrace, an adaptation of the Booker Prize-winning novel by J. M. Coetzee that goes to the heart of ethical complexities in modern South Africa.

It was confirmed this week that John Malkovich will replace UK actor Ralph Fiennes as the novel’s central character, Porfessor David Lurie in the film version of JM Coetzee’s Disgrace. Malkovich, 52, has been nominated for two Oscars.

It's arguable that the complex Malcovich would make for a much better Professor Lurie than Fiennes, although it's a pity that they have not cast a South African actor for the role.

In 1999, Disgrace was awarded the prestigious Booker Prize and in 2003, Coetzee won the Nobel Prize for Literature. The SA-born author now lives in Australia where he is an honorary research fellow of the University of Adelaide’s English department..

Disgrace centres on a middle-aged romantic-poetry scholar, Profess David Lurie, whose world falls apart after his love affair with a student comes to light. He retreats to his daughter, Lucy’s Eastern Cape farm where he gets entangled in a disturbing web of post-apartheid politics.

Director Steve Jacobs and screenwriter Anna-Maria Monticelli plan to film Disgrace in South Africa later this year. The producers hope to cast a South African actress as Lucy and some of the country’s top actresses have auditioned for the role.

The executive producer of Disgrace is Daria Jovicic (Girl With a Pearl Earring).


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