Keri Russell is in talks to join Guillermo del Toro’s supernatural film Antlers. Russell is an actress in high demand lately, and a variety of different filmmakers are scrambling to attach her name to their projects. The acclaimed FX series The Americans, which starred Russell as Elizabeth Jennings, wrapped earlier this year in May, meaning the star's schedule is wide open for films like Antlers.
Now that she's finished her run on television, it appears as though Russell is looking for a return to the big screen. Last week, Russell was revealed to be the latest new addition to the Star Wars franchise, having been cast as an as-of-yet unknown character in the upcoming Star Wars: Episode IX. As if that wasn't big enough, Russell doesn't appear to be slowing down in the slightest following her conclusion on television, and instead seems to be gearing up for even more impressive projects with Star Wars and her potential role in Antlers.
THR reports Russell is in talks to play a teacher whose concern over an isolated and quiet student in her classroom draws her into a life-threatening ordeal where her student’s nightmarish secret could save or destroy their town. Russell’s would-be character must then work to protect the boy and save everybody’s lives. Guillermo del Toro himself will not be directing. Rather, the Shape of Water filmmaker will serve as a producer on the Fox Searchlight movie.
Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart, Black Mass) will take the reins of director instead, based on a script co-written by Nick Antosca (Channel Zero, Hannibal) and Henry Chaisson (whose first feature film will be Antlers). In addition to del Toro, David S. Goyer (who worked on Blade 2 with the director) will serve as a fellow producer on Antlers. The supernatural/horror film was first announced back in 2017 when it was reported that writer Antosca, whose series Channel Zero is considered one of Syfy’s best original series ever made, had sold Antlers to Fox Searchlight.
Russell may have a busy schedule, but del Toro also has an impressive amount of work on his plate at the moment. Even though he just wrapped up one of the most successful periods of his career with the release of The Shape of Water, which took Best Picture at this year’s Academy Awards, del Toro is working at a rapid pace. In April, it was announced that del Toro signed a deal with Fox Searchlight, which released del Toro’s Shape of Water, to create his own production label for sci-fi, horror, and fantasy films that he will either produce, write, and/or direct. In addition to all of his work with Fox Searchlight, del Toro is also developing a film adaptation of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark with Entertainment One and CBS Films.
As for Russell, Antlers fits well into her Star Wars schedule, as Antlers is aiming for a fall shoot in Canada, while Star Wars will film during the summer. This leaves an even better chance that Russell may indeed land the role in the sci-fi/horror flick. With Cooper, Antosca, and del Toro, Antlers certainly has an impressive team with strong creative minds all around, and the production can only benefit from Russell’s addition. If she is in fact added to the cast, the film has the potential to rank up alongside the past few year’s strongest horror films like Hereditary, Get Out, and A Quiet Place.