Jessica Chastain has been cut from upcoming movie The Death Of Life Of John F. Donovan.
Director Xavier Dolan announced on Instagram that the Zero Dark Thirty actress had been removed from his English-language debut because the final edit topped four hours and her storyline no longer fitted with the tone of the film.
“What you need to hear from me is that Jessica Chastain’s character, after what was a long period of reflection, had to be cut from the film,” he wrote. “It was an extremely difficult decision to make. I feel, toward Jessica, a very sincere love, and a great admiration. The decision was editorial and narrative, in that it has nothing to do with a performance, and everything to do with a character, and the compatibility of its storyline.”
The Mommy filmmaker explained that during the editing process, it became clear that the film was about family dynamics, childhood and dreams, rather than about heroes and their nemesis, so Jessica’s storyline didn’t feel like it belonged with the rest of the movie.
“Jessica has, since the very beginning, defended this project, and defended me on so many occasions,” he continued. “She is a terrific actress, a politically engaged artist, what is more, who relentlessly champions the causes she believes in. She is respected by her peers, and beloved by her public.
“I am disappointed that we didn’t get to reveal the exciting things we crafted together on this one adventure, but life is long, and missed opportunities always bode even greater future collaborations… I wanted you to find this out through me, and no one else.”
Jessica filmed the part of Moira McCallister-King, the publisher of a gossip magazine, who exposes the correspondence between an American TV star, played by Kit Harington, and an 11-year-boy Rupert, who reflects on the impact of the scandal 10 years later.
The film, which also stars Susan Sarandon, Natalie Portman, Thandie Newton and Kathy Bates, has no release date as yet.