Tom Hiddleston has Tweeted the above first image from Ben Wheatley’s big screen adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s novel, ‘High-Rise.’ Also starring the likes of Luke Evans, Elisabeth Moss, James Purefoy, Jeremy Irons, Sienna Miller, Reece Shearsmith, Peter Ferdinando, Stacy Martin and Dan Renton, the script for ‘High-Rise’ is by ‘Kill List’ and ‘A Field in England’ writer Amy Jump. A 2015 release is expected.
Set in a luxury high-rise building, J.G. Ballard’s unnerving 1975 novel follows a group of affluent tenants hell-bent on an orgy of destruction. Cocktail parties degenerate into marauding attacks on ‘enemy’ floors and the once-luxurious amenities become an arena for technological mayhem. Human society slips into violent reverse as the inhabitants of the ultra-modern high-rise, driven by primal urges, recreate a world ruled by the laws of the jungle. The satire is a long-time passion project for producer Jeremy Thomas, who was a friend of iconic writer J.G. Ballard, who died in 2009.
Previous adaptations of J.G. Ballard’s work include ‘Crash,’ directed by David Cronenberg, and Steven Spielberg’s epic, six-time Oscar nominee ‘Empire of The Sun.’ Ben Wheatley had the following to say about J,G, Ballard’s work last year, “I love Ballard’s work. This project started out with me looking at my bookcase, seeing the book, and thinking: ‘that would make a great film’. I started looking into who had the rights for the book and that led me to Jeremy, who has made some of my favourite films. It took me a few meetings just to get over the typewriter he has from Naked Lunch in his office.”
One of the UK’s most well-known novelists of the 1970s and 80s, J.G. Ballard came to be associated with the New Wave of science fiction early in his career and spawned a style famous for portraying dystopian modernity, bleak man-made landscapes and the psychological effects of technological, social or environmental developments.
Ben Wheatley previously directed ‘Down Terrace,’ ‘Kill List,’ ‘Sightseers’ and ‘A Field in England.’ The synopsis for the ‘High-Rise’ film is as follows: High-Rise centers on a new residential tower built on the eve of Margaret Thatcher’s rise to power, at the site of what will soon become the world’s financial hub. Designed as a luxurious solution to the problems of the city, it is a world apart. Enter Robert Laing (Hiddleston), a young doctor seduced by the high-rise and its creator, the visionary architect Anthony Royal (Irons). Laing discovers a world of complex loyalties, and also strikes up a relationship with Royal’s devoted aide Charlotte (Miller). But rot has set in beneath the flawless surface. Sensing discord amongst the tenants, Laing meets Wilder, a charismatic provocateur bent on inciting the situation. Wilder initiates Laing into the hidden life of the high-rise and Laing is shocked at what he sees. As the residents break into tribal factions, Laing finds himself in the middle of mounting violence. Violence that he also finds emerging in himself.