St. Vincent’s Annie Clark to Direct Gender-Swapped ‘Picture of Dorian Gray’
After three blissfully grotesque seasons of Penny Dreadful, it’s difficult to imagine anyone reinvigorating the familiar story of Dorian Gray as well as John Logan did in his tragically-short-lived gothic series. Enter Annie Clark, better known to fans as musician / rock god St. Vincent, who is set to make her feature directing debut with a gender-swapped take on The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Variety reports that Clark has signed on to helm a new feature adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s literary classic — with a twist. Set in the Victorian era, The Picture of Dorian Gray tells the story of a promiscuous pleasure-seeker who sells his soul for an ageless existence. In exchange, Dorian’s self-portrait will continue to age, all the while keeping record of his numerous sins. Clark’s version will feature a female lead and is based on a screenplay by David Birke, whose credits include Paul Verhoeven’s Elle and the upcoming Slender Man movie.
Clark made her directing debut with “Birthday Party,” the idiosyncratic and darkly comedic short starring Melanie Lynskey and Sheila Vand (A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night), which tells of a woman desperate to maintain normalcy for her child’s birthday party in the midst of a family tragedy. “Birthday Party” was one of four shorts featured in XX, a horror anthology directed entirely by women. Clark’s short was the most visually assured of the four, proving that her boldness and confidence as a musician translates beautifully to the world of filmmaking.
I can only imagine what she’ll be capable of with a bigger budget and a longer runtime.