Robert De Niro, Anne Hathaway, Oscar Isaac and Donald Sutherland are set to join Cate Blanchett, whose casting was previously announced in May, in the James Gray-directed RT Features period drama, Armageddon Time. Written and to be directed by Gray, Armageddon Time is a coming-of-age drama based on Gray’s childhood memories. The background setting throughout the film is America during the 1980 presidential election. Against this historical backdrop, topics of friendship and loyalty are explored in the film.
Deadline was the first to break the casting news and also reported that the film would be introduced to buyers at the virtual Cannes market by Wild Bunch International (WBI), who also represents the film’s international rights. RT Features’ Rodrigo Teixeira is set to produce, with Lourenço Sant’ Anna and Rodrigo Gutierrez executive producing.
Gray is in full belief that once moviegoing is allowed again, Armageddon Time will satisfy moviegoers’ desire to be moved. “Films do intimacy and family relationships very well, even better than the theater, because in the theater your best seat is still 20 feet away from the actor,” Gray said when he spoke with Deadline. “In the cinema, the close-up has tremendous power. What I’m after is something really quite moving. My recollection when I think back on that moment, which is 1980 as the time frame of the movie, and what an important year it was in the history of the country and for me personally and how in some ways, I was pretty damn lucky. My parents who were not wealthy at all as a working class family, used all the levers they could, to be able to go to this school. Which simultaneously saved my life, but also awakened me to real racism and anti-Semitism. In some ways, the idea of presenting a story like this within the context of this family, told with great warmth, is sometimes your greatest Trojan Horse, to involve people emotionally that way. And story is a great weapon to be able to deliver some pretty harsh news.”