Terry Gilliam's Next Film Is 'Mr. Vertigo' Starring Ralph Fiennes

Patience eventually paid off for Terry Gilliam as he finally completed the 25-year odyssey to complete The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. Now that it's done he's digging into the old desk drawer and pulling out a project that has been gathering dust for seven years, an adaptation of Paul Auster's novel, Mr. Vertigo, and a star is already in place.

Speaking at the Brussels International Film Festival, Gilliam revealed that Mr. Vertigo was the next project on his list, and that Ralph Fiennes is the star. The story sounds right up Gilliam's alley, too, taking place in the 1920s and centering on a young orphan boy taught how to levitate and tours the country as part of a circus act. Gilliam told Variety that Fiennes was always his choice but he initially received pushback over the cast because the actor wasn't deemed bankable enough.  I guess that's changed.

Here's the book synopsis: Paul Auster, the New York Times-bestselling author of The New York Trilogy, presents a dazzling, picaresque novel set in the late 1920s – the era of Babe Ruth, Charles Lindbergh, and Al Capone. Walter Claireborne Rawley, renowned nationwide as “Walt the Wonder Boy,” is a Saint Louis orphan rescued from the streets by a mysterious Hungarian Jew, Master Yehudi, who teaches Walt to walk on air. Master Yehudi brings Walt into a Kansas circus troupe consisting of Mother Sioux and Aesop, a young black genius. The vaudeville act takes them across a vast and vibrant country, through mythic Americana where they meet and fall prey to sinners, thieves, and villains, from the Kansas Ku Klux Klan to the Chicago mob. Walt’s rise to fame and fortune mirrors America’s own coming of age, and his resilience, like that of the nation, is challenged over and over and over again.

No official start date has been set, and Gilliam said he wasn't able to land any solid deals on the film while at Cannes. It'd be foolish to predict anything when it comes to Gilliam. We might see the movie in theaters next year, or maybe in 2028. One thing's for sure it's that he won't stop until he's finished.