‘The Dead Don’t Hurt’: Viggo Mortensen to Direct and Star in Western Love Story!!

It has been announced that three-time Academy Award-nominated actor Viggo Mortensen is set to direct, write, and star in the upcoming western love story The Dead Don’t Hurt. The film will be Mortensen’s sophomore directorial effort and see him co-star with Phantom Thread star Vicky Krieps as a pair of star-crossed lovers in 1860s America. The film is scheduled to begin filming this month in Canada.

The Dead Don’t Hurt will star Mortensen as a Danish immigrant Holger Olsen who crosses paths with an “independent” French Canadian woman Vivienne Le Coudy (Krieps). The pair agree to travel together and ultimately settle down in a quiet town to start a life together. However, when the Civil War separates them Vivienne finds herself surrounded by the corrupt and nefarious men of the town. Holger returns home from the war to find that both of them have changed in ways they could never have imagined. The story is described as a “tragic love story and a tale of revenge” and “a portrait of a passionate woman determined to stand up for herself in an unforgiving world dominated by ruthless men.”

Mortensen made his directorial film and writing debut in 2020 with his drama Falling. The film was a big hit with critics when it premiered at the Sundance and Cannes film festivals. However, audiences most likely know Mortensen for his iconic role as Aragorn in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy. His other roles include films like Captain FantasticGreen Book, and Eastern Promises. Mortensen also recently starred in David Cronenberg’s return to film, Crimes of the Future.

About making the film, Mortensen said:

Viggo Mortensen said; “My aim is to do justice to the story of a uniquely resilient woman living in a lawless and isolated part of the U.S. Southwest in the 1860s. Vivienne is a woman for all seasons; courageous, unfailingly honest and direct, yet capable of great empathy. The idea is to not simply have a woman play the leading role in a Western, but to have her lead the way in our story by virtue of her fiercely uncompromising nature. Vivienne is a real woman who stands alone in her time and place because of her principled behaviour, forward-thinking, and passion for life. We are very fortunate to have the talented Vicky Krieps embody this role, and, with the help of the great team we have assembled thanks to Talipot Studio, we hope to do justice to her exemplary life.”

Mortensen and Krieps will be joined in the cast by Solly McLeodDanny HustonGarret DillahuntTom BatemanLance Henriksen, and W. Earl Brown. Mortensen will also produce the film alongside Regina Solórzano and Jeremy Thomas. Solórzano also gave a quote on the film, adding:

“The Dead Don’t Hurt revolutionizes the codes of the Western genre, leaving the concept of the war of men aside to witness a love story free of archetypes, and the struggle and determination of a woman to win the most epic of battles: surviving abuse and extreme violence without ever betraying herself.”

Stay tuned to Collider for any future updates on The Dead Don’t Hurt. Read the film’s full synopsis below:

The Dead Don’t Hurt is a Western love story that takes place in the 1860s. Krieps stars as fiercely independent French Canadian Vivienne Le Coudy who embarks on a relationship with Danish immigrant Holger Olsen (Mortensen). After meeting Olsen in San Francisco, Vivienne agrees to travel with him to his home near the quiet town of Elk Flats, where they start a life together. The Civil War separates them, leaving Vivienne to fend for herself in a place controlled by powerful rancher Alfred Jeffries (Dillahunt) and his violent, wayward son Weston Jeffries (McLeod), aided and abetted by corrupt Mayor Rudolph Schiller (Huston). Olsen’s eventual return challenges their relationship as they have to confront and make peace with the person each has become. Both a tragic love story and a tale of revenge, The Dead Don’t Hurt is a portrait of a passionate woman determined to stand up for herself in an unforgiving world dominated by ruthless men.


via Collider

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