Three-time Oscar nominee Amy Adams has taken on some varied roles over the course of her career and, despite some forays into darker material (Doubt, The Fighter, and most likely the upcoming The Master), Adams has always provided a ray of sunlight into her works (even really gritty sunlight, like in The Fighter). However, her next project will plunge Adams into a blackness we’ve yet to see from her – and I can’t wait for it.
Variety reports that Adams is currently in negotiations to star in Gilles Paquet-Brenner’s Dark Places, an adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s novel of the same name. Adams would play Libby Day, a hardened character who witnessed the murder of most of her family when she was just seven. It was Libby’s testimony that put her fifteen-year-old brother behind bars for the crimes, but that’s given her little solace twenty-five years later. Nearly broke and an outcast from the rest of the world, Libby is approached by “the Kill Club,” a secret society who are bent on freeing Ben. And, well, that’s not a good thing for Libby.
The book’s official synopsis gives us still more insight into the story, telling us:
“Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in ‘The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas.’ As her family lay dying, little Libby fled their tiny farmhouse into the freezing January snow. She lost some fingers and toes, but she survived–and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, Ben sits in prison, and troubled Libby lives off the dregs of a trust created by well-wishers who’ve long forgotten her.
The Kill Club is a macabre secret society obsessed with notorious crimes. When they locate Libby and pump her for details–proof they hope may free Ben–Libby hatches a plan to profit off her tragic history. For a fee, she’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club…and maybe she’ll admit her testimony wasn’t so solid after all.
As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the narrative flashes back to January 2, 1985. The events of that day are relayed through the eyes of Libby’s doomed family members–including Ben, a loner whose rage over his shiftless father and their failing farm have driven him into a disturbing friendship with the new girl in town. Piece by piece, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started–on the run from a killer.”
While that might all sound a bit run-of-the-mill, what sets Flynn’s book apart is her depiction of Libby, who is just about as far as you can get from a sympathetic innocent. The film will take Adams to, forgive me, some truly dark places. Even within the first pages of the novel, it’s clear that Libby Day is a very different character than ones that Adams has previously played. On page one of Flynn’s book, Libby tells us, “I was not a lovable child, and I’d grown into a deeply unlovable adult. Draw a picture of my soul, and it’d be a scribble with fangs.” Now that sounds like an Oscar role.
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