Ansel Elgort has been offered the lead role in The Goldfinch, which is an adaptation of the Pulitzer-winning novel by author Donna Tartt. After building a résumé over the past few years with films like The Fault in Our Stars and Divergent, the actor had his big breakthrough this summer as the title character in Edgar Wright’s critically acclaimed Baby Driver, where he won audiences over with a multi-faceted performance. The success of Baby Driver boosted Elgort’s profile considerably, and now he’s one of the rising stars in Hollywood.
Elgort has November Criminals and Billionaire Boys Club set to come out later this year, but now he’s looking to parlay Baby Driver into more opportunities. Previously, he signed on to play a young John F. Kennedy in a biopic called Mayday 109 detailing Kennedy’s time in the Navy during World War II. It seems Elgort has a prestige itch he’s yearning to scratch, as he seems set to team up with the director of a recent Best Picture nominee.
Variety reports that Elgort has been offered the lead role of Theodore Decker in The Goldfinch, which will be helmed by Brooklyn filmmaker John Crowley. The director had met with several candidates for nearly two months before giving the role to Elgort. The story is a character study told in the first person, following a young Theodore who survives a terrorist bombing at an art museum. Unfortunately, this attack led to his mother’s death. Theo finds a small Dutch Golden Age painting known as The Goldfinch covered in debris, which he keeps as a source of hope. From that point on, chaos ensues, as Theodore stumbles into the world of crime and art forgery.
Should Elgort sign on, this move would illustrate his desire to expand his horizons as an actor. Source told Variety that he was on the hunt for something that potentially could be an awards contender following Baby Driver, and working with Crowley sounds like a good way to achieve that. The director’s previous film, Brooklyn, netted actress Saoirse Ronan an Oscar nomination, so clearly Crowley knows how to work well with his stars. It’ll be interesting to see Elgort dig deep into a powerful, dramatic role after displaying his range on Baby Driver. Hopefully he can build on the forward momentum and continue his resurgence following the disappointing returns of Insurgent and Allegiant.
Something about The Goldfinch appealed to Elgort, as he chose it over Brian Helegand’s The Finest Kind. The actor displayed great judgment by collaborating with Wright, so ideally this will yield similar results. Between this and Mayday 109, Elgort could find himself in contention for some Oscars sooner or later.
We’ll keep you updated on The Goldfinch as more information becomes available.
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