An upcoming untitled Matt Damon thriller has been given a 2020 awards season release date. At one point, Damon was synonymous with the thriller/espionage/action genres, wowing audiences with turns in the Bourne franchise as well as performances in Oscar-worthy dramas.
Though Damon’s best days are far from behind him, for many fans, it feels as though the one-time Oscar-winning, Good Will Hunting star is very much in need of a project that he can sink his teeth into. Recent past efforts have been middling at best, with Damon’s last big audience and critical hit having been back in 2015, with The Martian. There was much hope that his pairing up with respected filmmaker Alexander Payne on the quirky and inventive Downsizing would amount to some substantial accolades, but the film largely fell flat.
As things currently stand, word has arrived regarding a new Damon project, though it isn’t the directorial debut that so many are eager to see. Instead, Damon will be heading back to his beloved thriller genre, this time with Oscar-winning director Tom McCarthy (Spotlight). The news comes to us via a Focus Features press release and reveals that the currently untitled film will arrive in US theatres with a limited release on November 6, 2020, before going wide on November 13, 2020 and international on November 20, 2020. This places the new film right in the heart of awards season – a move that is likely very much intentional on the part of Focus.
Though Damon's new thriller is officially untitled as of this writing, many have previously known it as Stillwater. The film’s plot follows Damon, as Bill, an “oil-rig roughneck” who leaves his familiar Oklahoman environs to be with his daughter, who has been studying in France but has recently been imprisoned for a murder that she claims she did not commit. As a complete fish out of water in France, Bill must face the immense odds for success that run against him and fight to exonerate his daughter. In addition to Damon, the film also stars Abigail Breslin and Camille Cottin.
Some might see similarities between this film and the true story of American Amanda Knox, who spent four years in an Italian prison after being convicted of murder. Though the verdict was eventually overturned and Knox was freed, the struggle for Knox’s family to bring her home was an enormous one, both mentally and financially. For Damon, this could be just the sort of project he’s been in need of as of late – a dramatic thriller with a heart, brought to the big screen by a Oscar winning director.
Source: Focus Features