“When people have the freedom to choose,” intones Meryl Streep in the first trailer for new dystopian sci-fi drama The Giver, “they choose wrong.” Which can only mean one thing: An all-Meryl category at the Oscars next year. Oh, and a new entry into the young adult adaptation canon.
Well, we say new, but The Giver is based on Lois Lowry’s Newbery Medal-winning 1993 novel, so the story actually originates before the likes of Divergent and The Hunger Games.
Brenton Thwaites stars as Jonas, who lives in a seemingly ideal, if colourless, world of conformity and contentment. The utopia was birthed by humanity deciding to reject strong emotions and by closing off their memories of pain and suffering, with leadership from the likes of Streep. Not until he's given his life assignment as the Receiver of Memory does Jonas begin to understand the dark, complex secrets behind his fragile community. For upon meeting the previous Receiver, now known as The Giver (Jeff Bridges), his eyes and heart are opened to the reality of his world, one that he decides needs to change for the better – even if it means big trouble.
Phillip Noyce direct this one, working from Michael Mitnick’s script and the cast includes Alexander Skarsgard, Katie Holmes, Taylor Swift and Odeya Rush. The Giver is out in the US on August 15 but doesn’t yet have a solid UK date.