Diane Kruger is joining the world of dance alongside Never Rarely Sometimes Always breakout star Talia Ryder. The Hollywood Reporter confirmed the news.
Kruger and Ryder are set to star in writer-director James Napier Robertson’s film Joika about the elite American ballet dancer Joy Womack.
Joy “Joika” Womack is one of only a few foreigners — and only two American women — to ever make it through Moscow’s infamously difficult Bolshoi Ballet Academy.
Napier Robertson is the writer and director behind the biopic The Dark Horse about the New Zealand chess champion Genesis Potini who suffered from severe bipolar disorder.
Ryder replaces Thomasin McKenzie, who was previously attached to star as Joy Womack. Volkova, a former ballet dancer and the head of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy, will be played by Kruger as her harsh yet encouraging mentor.
“Diane and Talia are a match made in heaven. Diane’s talent and experience the perfect complement to Talia’s bold, rising star,” said Napier Robertson to The Hollywood Reporter. “It will be a thrill and delight to watch them spar – sparks will fly! Talia’s gifts as a dancer are only equalled by her stunning talents as an actor, and Diane is a force of nature, embodying Tatiyana Volkova’s no-nonsense brilliance and passion. The dynamic between the two of them will be absolutely electric.”
Ryder made a name for herself in Eliza Hittman’s indie hit Never Rarely Sometimes Always for Focus Features. She will be seen next in Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of West Side Story.
Kruger finished work on A.J. Edwards’ First Love and is filming Neil LaBute’s Out of the Blue. She will be seen next in the thriller The 355 with co-stars Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, and Lupita Nyong’o.