By Simon Dang | The Playlist April 18, 2012 at 9:03AM
As one half of the comedic duo behind "Little Britain," Matt Lucas has stayed relatively close to his lighter wheelhouse when venturing onto the silver screen featuring in "Bridesmaids," "Gnomeo & Juliet" and the upcoming "Small Apartments." The actor, though, is in line for a bit of a gear change, joining Charlie Stratton's adaptation of Emile Zola's period-drama "Therese Raquin."
With a strong cast featuring Jessica Lange (who replaced Glenn Close), Elizabeth Olsen, Oscar Isaac and Tom Felton, the story centers the titular young woman (Olsen), trapped in a loveless marriage to her sickly cousin Camille (Felton), who enters a passionate affair with her husband's best friend Laurent (Isaac), with tragic results for everyone involved. Lucas will play Olivier, a policeman who, along with his inspector father, regularly calls upon the Raquin family.
EW are also describing the film as a "dark, erotic thriller" which, we guess, is the first indication of how they'll tackle Zola's novel. A great cast and strong source material, no doubt, but will Stratton deliver on his directorial debut? Let's hope so. Lensing is set to begin in Serbia next month.
Before that, though, Lucas is also noted to be part of Michael Winterbottom's currently-lensing "King Of Soho," where he'll play the part of famous drag queen and regular John Waters collaborator, Divine. While it may seem like a challenging role, fans of "Little Britain" can probably as well vouch that the role is one Lucas will likely flourish in -- a notion not lost of the actor himself who joked that "playing an overweight homosexual will be a real challenge!" The film stars Steve Coogan as porn-baron Paul Raymond alongside Anna Friel, Tamsin Egerton, Imogen Poots, Chris Addison, Dara O'Briain and Sarah Solemani for the Matt Greenhalgh-scripted tale. [EW]