By Simon Dang | The Playlist January 16, 2011 at 9:25AM
After recent set pictures were released of Glenn Close in the titular role in Rodrigo Garcia's period drama "Albert Nobbs," we now have our first look at rising thespian Mia Wasikowska in character for the "Gosford Park"-style "below stairs" drama about a woman (Close) in 19th Century Ireland who disguises herself as a man in order to survive.
Wasikowska replaced another up-and-comer in Amanda Seyfried late in the project's development -- setting up a reteaming with the writer and director of her breakout show "In Treatment," in which she first showed audiences (American, at least) what she was capable of. The actress switch was, in fact, just one of a handful of changes which also saw names like Orlando Bloom and Michael Gambon fall off the original casting announcements.There's certainly no lack of talent left behind though, with the two pictured actresses joined by Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Aaron Johnson and a few talented thespians we've missed in past announcements: Brendan Gleeson, Brenda Fricker and Janet McTeer.
"Albert Nobbs" will see Wasikowska play "Helen, a young maid who forms a dangerous and potentially tragic love triangle with title character Albert (Close) and young handyman Joe (Johnson)" -- an interesting triangle to say the least. The story is based on Irish author George Moore’s short story, “The Singular Life of Albert Nobbs," which saw an Off-Broadway interpretation by Simone Benmussa that also starred Close in a role that won her an Obie Award.
Close is evidently a driving force behind the film adaptation, shepherding the project as a producer and even co-writing the script with Man Booker prize-winning author John Banville. Production is currently taking place in Dublin and, considering the production schedule, likely lines it up for a festival premiere later this year.