Silence movie: Martin Scorsese's next film 'to be released in time for 2016 Oscars'

Wolf of Wall Street director has wanted to adapt the Japanese novel Silence 'since 1989'

Heavyweight Hollywood director Martin Scorsese is one step closer to bringing his long-awaited historical drama Silence to fruition following reports that he is negotiating distribution rights.

Scorsese has reportedly sparked the interest of Paramount, amid tentative plans for the film to be released in November 2015 - perfectly timed for Oscars consideration.

It stars Briton Andrew Garfield of Spiderman fame as the lead, alongside Irish Hollywood regular Liam Neeson, Adam Driver from Girls and Frances Ha and The Last Samurai actor Ken Watanabe.

As Deadline reports, filming is expected to begin in Taiwan later this year.

The movie is an adaptation of Japanese author Shusaku Endo’s 1966 book of the same name – widely considered to be his magnum opus.

 

It follows the story of a 17-century Portuguese Jesuit priest; a missionary who is tasked with taking Christianity to Japan but who faces wicked religious persecution while there. One of its central themes explores a ‘silent’ God in the face of adversity.

It is a project that Scorsese has been willing to start for more than three decades.

It has been financed by Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films, which also has upcoming films starring Bruce Willis, Vin Diesel and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Corsan Entertainment is also reportedly co-financing, while the script has been written by Gangs of New York writer Jay Cocks.

Last year, Scorsese said that Silence would be a “suspenseful film, with elements of a thriller,” with the personal project requiring a “smaller approach, more internal.”

“The subject matter is very close to my heart,” he told Total Film at Cannes in 2013, where he was understood to be trying to secure funds for the production. “I’ve been working on it since I first read the book in 1989.”

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