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Celebrated American filmmaker Martin Scorsese has recently wrapped production on his intriguing biopic The Wolf of Wall Street, and as the Cannes Film Festival approaches he's already readying to promote his newly minted next venture Silence. Deadline reports financing for the adaptation of Shusaku Endo's controversial but acclaimed 1967 novel has been secured by Emmett/Furla Films, and Silence's producers will be shopping the will-be picture's distribution rights at Cannes next month.
Scorsese has reportedly been interesting in pursuing this project since 1991, and over the years has considered Daniel Day-Lewis, Benicio Del Toro and Gael Garcia Bernal for its cast. Memorably, he was hoping to shoot Silence in the summer of 2007. Then in the winter of 2011, he insisted it would be his follow-up to Hugo, but he made The Wolf of Wall Street instead... then renewed his claim to make Silence next. This is a story we've heard again, and again, and again. But with its financing lined up, it seems like this really could be Scorsese's shot to make the movie he's so longed to shoot. Depending on the scheduling requirements of his not yet announced cast, Silence could shoot in Taiwan as early as July 2014.
The novel centers on 17th century Jesuits who put their very lives at risk when they travel to Japan to spread Christianity. When one of these missionaries, Fr. Cristóvão Ferreira, has reportedly abandoned his faith and calling, Sebastião Rodrigues, a young Portuguese member of the order, goes to discover the truth. He and his colleague Fr. Francisco Garrpe discover a culture where Christianity has been forced underground by persecution and torture of admitted believers. The book's title refers to God's silence during these troubling times.
While this is good news for Scorsese, it bad news for his Snowman adaptation as it appears to confirm reports Universal is looking elsewhere for a director. But Scorsese is never short on potential projects, so I'm sure he'll get over losing that one.