A project, according to The Hollywood Reporter, is currently underway for a bizarre biopic of prolific science fiction author Philip K. Dick. Written by the author’s daughter and Amazon writer and producer, Isa Hackett, the film is currently working under the title Jane, named after Dick’s twin sister who died only six weeks after birth. Oscar Award-winners Charlize Theron and Alfonso Cuarón are, at this time, only tapped to produce, but the Amazon project is being worked with the two in mind, with Theron as lead and Cuarón to direct.
In order to tell the fantastical real-life tale of her father’s life, Hackett penned Jane as a “genre-bending” screenplay that will tell the author’s story in a deeply personal way. Only six weeks after Dick and his twin sister, Jane, were born the baby girl died in infancy. The loss affected the author in such a profound way that his sister’s absence plagued his existence throughout his life, as well as influenced his work. His daughter, wanting to honor her father’s memory in a way that complemented his extraordinary legacy, chose to write a biopic through the eyes of Jane.
Hackett detailed the thought behind her script, and how her father’s life will be retold in an alternate reality, not unlike the ones he himself created, and sometimes lived in:
“The story of Jane has been with me for as long as I can remember. Jane, my father’s twin sister who died a few weeks after birth, was at the center of his universe. Befitting a man of his unique imagination, this film will defy the conventions of a biopic and embrace the alternate reality Philip K. Dick so desperately desired—one in which his beloved sister survived beyond six weeks of age. It is her story we will tell, her lens through which we will see him and his imagination. There is no better way to honor him than to grant him his wish, if only for the screen.”
Forty years after Dick’s death in 1982, the author’s peculiar life is being examined in an all-new way. A handful of his work has been adapted to screen over the years, including sci-fi paragons Blade Runner and Total Recall, but in the past year the man himself has been the subject of interest. In June, it was announced that a biopic, Only Apparently Real, is currently in its early stages with Air Force One‘s producer Jon Shestack, but that, at the time, the project had yet to find its director or cast. Whereas Hackett‘s film will portray her father from a rather unique lens, Shestack‘s script opts for the more traditional biopic style.
Actress Theron is set to produce the film, and is best known for her roles in Mad Max: Fury Road and as convicted serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster, which earned her an Academy Award. Theron’s work spans genres from action in the Fast and Furious franchise and Atomic Blonde, to sci-fi like Prometheus, Æon Flux and her most recent appearance in Disney‘s MCU in Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness. As a producer, Theron is attached to Netflix‘s The Old Guard, Atomic Blonde, Monster and more. Theron as the lead in Jane has not been confirmed, but considering she’s starred in nearly every film she’s produced, it certainly isn’t out of the question.
Cuarón, who is also onboard to produce, is a seasoned writer, producer and filmmaker and multi-Oscar winner. He is best known for his breathless drama Gravity starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, as well as Children of Men and 2016’s Roma, all of which he wrote and directed. One of Cuarón‘s earliest films, 1995’s spectacularly magical A Little Princess earned the director two Academy nominees, before he later directed a fan-favorite film in the Harry Potter franchise Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Though it’s not confirmed whether Cuarón will direct Jane, the project is in development with him in mind.
Jane is in the early stages of production and has not yet disclosed cast, or a forecasted release date. You can read the official description below:
“A moving, suspenseful and darkly humorous story about a woman’s unique relationship with her brilliant, but troubled twin, who also happens to be the celebrated novelist Philip K. Dick. While attempting to rescue her brother from predicaments both real and imagined, Jane plunges deeper and deeper into a fascinating world of his creation.”