Norton will direct from his own screenplay, and will produce with his Class 5 Films partner Bill Migliore (“Manchester By the Sea”). MWM Studios’ Gigi Pritzker and Rachel Shane, whose collective credits include “Hell or High Water” and “Genius,” will also produce. Executive producers are Michael Bederman, Adrian Alperovich, Sue Kroll, Robert F. Smith, Brian Sheth, and Daniel Nadler.
The film, which has begun shooting in New York City, will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.
In an unusually bold adaptation, writer-director Edward Norton has transplanted the main character of Jonathan Lethem’s best-selling novel Motherless Brooklyn from modern Brooklyn into an entirely new, richly woven neo-noir narrative, re-set in 1950s New York. Emotionally shattered by a botched job, Lionel Essrog (Norton), a lonely private detective with Tourette syndrome, finds himself drawn into a multilayered conspiracy that expands to encompass the city’s ever-growing racial divide and the devious personal and political machinations of a Robert Moses–like master builder, played by Alec Baldwin. Featuring a rigorously controlled star turn by Norton and outstanding additional supporting performances by Bruce Willis, Willem Dafoe, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Bobby Cannavale, Leslie Mann, and Cherry Jones, plus a haunting soundtrack (featuring a score by Daniel Pemberton, with orchestration by Wynton Marsalis, and an original song by Thom Yorke), Motherless Brooklyn is the kind of production Hollywood almost never makes anymore, and a complexly conceived, robust evocation of a bygone era of New York that speaks to our present moment.