By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist June 13, 2011 at 5:25AM
We'll give it up to Madge. She's certainly ambitious. After whiffing pretty hard on her directorial debut "Filth & Wisdom" she raised the stakes for her sophomore effort, the dual narrative "W.E." and now she's got some major players to help get it out there.
The Weinstein Company have announced that they have picked up the U.S. rights to the film. Starring Abbie Cornish, Oscar Isaac, Andrea Riseborough and James D’Arcy to lead the cast in the highly ambitious film, that tells the parallel stories of the love affair between King Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson, which led to the royal’s abdication, and the contemporary story of a woman, Wally Winthrop, with romantic problems of her own, in addition to an obsession with the life of the Duchess of Windsor. Mega producer William Orbit (probably best known for manning the board of Madonna's smash hit "Ray Of Light" and composer Abel Korzeniowski are helping on the score and the film looks primed for Venice Film Festival premiere.
No release date has yet been set, but you can bet if the film does well on the festival circuit the Weinsteins will drop it this fall for an awards season push. If it falters, we may be waiting a bit longer for the movie to arrive. An official synopsis has also arrived and it reveals that the "contemporary" portion is actually set in 1998 -- the same year Madonna's "Ray Of Light" album came out. Hmm.....
W.E. tells the story of two fragile but determined women - Wally Winthrop and Wallis Simpson - separated by more than six decades. In 1998, lonely New Yorker Wally Winthrop (Abbie Cornish) is obsessed with what she perceives as the ultimate love story: King Edward's VIII's abdication of the British throne for the woman he loved, American divorcée Wallis Simpson. But Wally's research, including several visits to the Sotheby's auction of the Windsor Estate, reveals that the couple's life together was not as perfect as she thought. Weaving back and forth in time, W.E. intertwines Wally's journey of discovery in New York with the story of Wallis (Andrea Riseborough) and Edward (James D'Arcy), from the glamorous early days of their romance to the slow unraveling of their lives in the decades that followed.