Chabrol prepares La fille coupée en deux
by Fabien Lemercier
After A Comedy of Power [+see also:
film profile], presented in official competition at last year’s Berlin Film Festival, French director Claude Chabrol is currently preparing his 52nd feature, La fille coupée en deux (lit. "The Girl Cut In Half"), which will shoot from September through November in and around Lyon.
The film’s cast already includes Ludivine Sagnier, who will make her first appearance in a Chabrol film, and François Berléand, the star of A Comedy of Power.
According to the director, the still-confidential script will be "a quite free and contemporary adaptation of an event that took place in New York in 1905, and which led to the murder of an architect", details which evoke the Harry K. Thaw/Stanford White/Evelyn Nesbit affair. Thaw, the son of a millionaire, was sent home from Harvard after repeated escapades, including drug and alcohol abuse, poker playing and firearm threats.
An inveterate philanderer who wanders about Broadway in search of adventure with the Chorus Girls, there he meets the famous architect and fellow philanderer Stanford White. Fascinated by a 16 year-old girl, Evelyn Nesbit, the two men become jealously competitive of each other and develop a reciprocal antipathy, which gradually worsens until Thaw (who had taken Evelyn under his wing through sadistic domination) murders White at the end of June 1906 in Madison Square Garden at the finale of Mamzelle Champagne: "I Could Love a Million Girls".
The successful producer/distributor/sales agent trio that worked superbly on A Comedy of Power is behind this new film as well: produced by Patrick Godeau for Alicéléo, La fille coupée en deux will be released on French screens by Pan Européenne Edition and is being sold internationally by Wild Bunch.
(Translated from French)
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