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Juliette Binoche, Ethan Hawke Confirmed for Hirokazu Kore-eda’s ‘Verite’

Fresh from his Palme d’Or triumph in Cannes, the Japanese director of “Shoplifters,” Hirokazu Kore-eda, confirmed that his next film will feature two of France’s biggest stars Juliette Binoche and Catherine Deneuve. They are to be joined by Ethan Hawke and Ludivine Sagnier (“8 Women”).

La Verite” (which translates as ‘The Truth’ in English) will shoot entirely in France in October and November this year. The film is being jointly produced by French firm 3B Productions and Kore-eda’s Bunbuku. Paris-based Wild Bunch is set as the international sales agent. A release in 2019 is penciled in, with Gaga set as the Japanese distributor and sales agent in Asia, excluding China.

Binoche and Hawke co-star as a married couple who return to France from the United States when the wife’s mother (Deneuve), a well-known actress, publishes her autobiography. During their reunion, various truths are revealed. The script is based on a stage play Kore-eda wrote nearly fifteen years ago, but never produced.

The participation of Binoche, Deneuve and Hawke has been teased for months, with Wild Bunch reportedly supplying casting and other information to the press. Speaking at a Tokyo screening of “Shoplifters,” Kore-eda recently expressed his frustration, saying: “It’s puzzling how much has been leaked, such as cast names and how much they’re getting paid.”

In a statement released Monday, however, he focused on his immediate task. “Directing while overcoming differences of language and culture is a stimulating challenge,” Kore-eda said. “Whether or not to direct the way I do in Japan is something I will think about on the set.”

Kore-eda has long been hailed as one of the world’s top drama film makers. Several of his films including “Nobody Knows,” “Air Doll,” and “Our Little Sister” premiered in Cannes. His “Like Father, Like Son” was acquired for remake by Steven Spielberg.

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