Paul Schrader is a prolific filmmaker whose work often depicts “man in a room” stories, which feature isolated, troubled men confronting an existential crisis. Paul Schrader’s new film, Oh Canada, is all set for its premiere at the 77th Cannes Film Festival. During a roundtable interview at the prestigious event, Schrader revealed the details regarding his upcoming project.

During the discussion at the roundtable with Collider’s Steve Weintraub, the 77-year-old director unveiled his plan for his new film, which he is planning to begin this fall. Schrader’s new project is titled Non-Compos Mentis and will focus on sexual obsession.

Describing the film, Schrader said, “I’ve written a noir, as a kind of a sexual obsession, called Non-Compos Mentis, about the foolish things men do for love.” Schrader also revealed that he managed to secure financing for the film before locking in a cast, given that it’s “plot-driven.”

While discussing the film’s plot, the director also shared that Fifty Shades of Grey actor Jamie Dornan was his first choice to lead the film, but given the film’s sexual nature, he stepped away from the project. So, as of now, the film is castless. Schrader’s upcoming project will reunite him with producer David Gonzales from the Northern Lights. The producer-director duo previously worked together on the recent film Oh Canada.

Schrader also noted during the interview that Gonzales had already procured most of the funding for the upcoming project, in contrast to Oh, Canada. He confirmed his financing comments, saying, “David has the most money for the next one already, and we’re not even cast; we just out to actors right now. So on this one (Oh Canada), we couldn’t get the money until we were cast, but now we’re getting it before we cast.

So, since the financing of the film is set, all Schrader has to do is find a fitting cast and begin production.

What is Oh Canada all about?

Paul Schrader is an iconic and one of the most celebrated screenwriters and directors in the film industry. His films often explore deep and complex themes like moral conflict and redemption.

His latest creation, Oh Canada, is one such piece that can leave you thinking. The film is based on the 2021 novel Foregone by Russell Banks. The premise of the film revolves around a tormented writer, Leonardo Fife, who is on the brink of death. Leonard Fife (Richard Gere in the modern day, Jacob Elordi in flashbacks) is a terminally ill writer and filmmaker who has agreed to have the final testament of his life filmed by documentary filmmakers Malcolm (Michael Imperioli) and Diana (Victoria Hill) but proves to be an unreliable narrator due to his failing and distorted memory.

Schrader’s work is thought-provoking and complex at the same time, making him an incredible storyteller of his era.

Oh Canada had its world premiere at the 77th Cannes Film Festival on May 17, 2024.

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