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Paul Mescal to lead Linklater’s 20-year project, ‘Merrily We Roll Along’, based on the hit musical

Paul Mescal, who is currently wowing audiences in the brilliant Aftersun (still playing in some cinemas and on MUBI) is set to star in Richard Linklater’s adaptation of Stephen Sondheim’s musical Merrily We Roll Along.

Very much like his excellent Boyhood, the film will be shot over a number of years – twenty years – with the movie being lensed in reverse chronological order. The film is based on the musical, which had music and lyrics by Sondheim and a book by George Furth. It is itself based on a 1930s novel by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart.

The story revolves around the character of Franklin Shepard, who Mescal will play, a composer who abandons a glittering Broadway career to make music for Hollywood movies.

The film’s story will play out in reverse. The musical on which it is based began in 1976 moving back towards its ending in 1957. Beanie Feldstein is also cast in the key role of theater critic Mary Flynn, while Ben Platt will play another friend of Shepard, lyricist Charley.

Obviously don’t hold your breath as this one won’t be on screen until at least 2040 when Mescal will be in his 40s. The Irish actor is currently 26.

More news on this over the years as it becomes available.


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