Do you need an imposing, authority figure? Well, “The Giver” got one–Deadline reports that Meryl Streep has joined the cast of the adaptation of Lois Lowry’s classic YA novel. Jeff Bridges plays the title character and Brenton Thwaites plays the young lead (well, not that young–in the book the character is eleven or twelve and Thwaites is twenty four). Philip Noyce is directing.
Streep will play the Chief Elder, who controls a seemingly utopian society that has achieved peace by eradicating everything bad–sadness, anger, pain, etc. The Giver (Bridges) is the one person who holds all the memories of the way the world used to be. When he starts to train his future replacement (Thwaites), the younger man begins to think their perfect world isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The book won the Newbery Award in 1994.
This will be Streep in domineering, “Devil Wears Prada” mode, which is just fine. Then again, any kind of Meryl is pretty fine, right? She’ll next be seen bidding for her next Oscar nomination in “August: Osage County,” then has a smaller movie, “The Homesman,” with Tommy Lee Jones. She’s also booked to star in “Into the Woods,” which is supposed to start filming in about November…and it seems that “The Giver” is due to film in October in South Africa. Hmm. Well, the Chief Elder isn’t an “in every scene” kind of part, but you’d think they’d need some pre-shoot rehearsal time for “Into the Woods.” Well, I’m assuming that someone with more knowledge about schedules and such–you know, agents, producers, etc.–has this all figured out.