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Peter Weir Will Journey to ‘The Keep’

Peter Weir, The Keep
Fox/Universal/Miramax

Peter Weir must be one of cinema’s great undersung heroes. You’d think that the man who directed ‘Gallipoli,’ ‘Witness,’ ‘The Mosquito Coast,’ ‘Dead Poet’s Society,’ ‘The Truman Show’ and ‘Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World’ would be universally beloved and capable of getting something made with the snap of his fingers, but that’s simply not the case. His previous film, ‘The Way Back,’ was oddly buried at release. Thankfully, that’s not keeping him back: his next film has been announced and it’s a “contemporary gothic thriller” called ‘The Keep.’

Take a sigh of relief, film fans: ‘The Keep’ is not a remake of Michael Mann’s horror film of the same name, but rather an adaptation of Jennifer Egan’s 2007 novel. Here’s the official synopsis for the book, which will have to suffice until the film starts rolling and we get something official:

“Two cousins, irreversibly damaged by a childhood prank whose devastating consequences changed both their lives, reunite twenty years later to renovate a medieval castle in Eastern Europe, a castle steeped in blood lore and family pride. Built over a secret system of caves and tunnels, the castle and its violent history invoke and subvert all the elements of a gothic past: twins, a pool, an old baroness, a fearsome tower. In an environment of extreme paranoia, cut off from the outside world, the men reenact the signal event of their youth, with even more catastrophic results. And as the full horror of their predicament unfolds, a prisoner, in jail for an unnamed crime, recounts an unforgettable story—a story about two cousins who unite to renovate a castle—that brings the crimes of the past and present into piercing relation.”

One of Weir’s greatest strengths is his versatility. Able to deftly jump from genre to genre, Weir is the ultimate working director: if you give him a good script, he’ll shoot it and he’ll shoot if perfectly. He hasn’t made anything remotely like this since 1975′s creepy classic ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock,’ so he’s long past due for another entry in the genre.

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