Roman Polanski is adapting Yasmina Reza’s Tony award-winning play God of Carnage, [originally Le Dieu du Carnage] and is assembling quite a cast: Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster, Christoph Waltz and Matt Dillon will star as two couples arguing with each other and amongst themselves after their sons get in a altercation. Though the play is set in Brooklyn, banned-from-America Polanski will be shooting it in France. Filming starts in Paris in February and will last for 12 weeks. The play originated on the West End in London before moving over to Broadway early last year. So far the Broadway production has starred James Gandolfini, Marcia Gay Harden, Jeff Daniels and Hope Davis, with Harden taking home a Tony for her efforts.
Given the ages of everyone cast, presumably Foster and Waltz will play one couple and Winslet and Dillon the other [the entire play takes place in one night in a Brooklyn apartment]. It seems slightly unfair to match the supremely talented Winslet with the merely serviceable Dillon, but he’s also been capable of bringing some unexpected depth to performances when given the chance. As for Waltz and Foster together, well we will see. If Polanski moves fast we could see this one in time for next year’s Oscar season.
Before the play begins, two 11-year-old children, Ferdinand Reille and Bruno Vallon get involved in argument because Bruno refuses to let Ferdinand join his ‘gang’. Ferdinand knocks out two of Bruno’s teeth with a stick. That night, the parents of both children meet to discuss the matter. Ferdinand’s father, Alain, is a lawyer who is never off his mobile phone. Ferdinand’s mother, Annette is in “wealth management” her husband’s wealth, to be precise, and constantly wears good shoes. Bruno’s father, Michel [Michael in the Broadway production], is a self-made wholesaler with an unwell mother. Bruno’s mother, Véronique [Veronica in the Broadway production], is writing a book about Darfur. As the evening goes on, the meeting degenerates into the four getting into irrational arguments, and their discussion falls into the loaded topics of misogyny, racial prejudice and homophobia.