One half of the gifted Safdie Brothers duo, Benny Safdie, will join award-winning actress Rachel McAdams in an adaption of Judy Blume’s 1970 novel Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret.
Directed by The Edge of Seventeen’s Kelly Fremon Craig, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret is an adaptation of Blume’s classic coming-of-age tale that follows the life of sixth-grader Margaret (Abby Ryder Fortson). In the book, we follow her trials and tribulations as she moves to the city from the suburbs and begins to ponder existential questions about life, puberty and adolescence. Margaret turns to the universe for answers, along with guidance from her mother and grandmother, Sylvia (Kathy Bates), who also come to realise that life is a continuous search for meaning and fulfilment.
Renowned for her stellar roles in The Notebook and teen classic Mean Girls, Rachel McAdams will star as Margaret’s religious mother Barbara. She is housewife to Herb, Margaret’s Jewish insurance salesman father, to be played by Benny Safdie. Actor and independent filmmaker Safdie broke through in 2017 with his feature film Good Time, which he directed and starred in. In 2019, he directed and wrote the critically acclaimed Uncut Gems featuring Adam Sandler. The highly in-demand actor is also working on the upcoming Disney+ series Obi-Wan Kenobi. Abby Ryder Fortson will star as the titular Margaret.
The Edge of Seventeen producer and Hollywood legend James L. Brooks is re-teaming with director Fremon Craig on this project. After decades of rejecting offers, Blume granted Lionsgate the rights following Craig and Brook’s successful 2016 film adaptation.
Blume is confident that her cherished novel is in the trusted hands of a talented cast and production team. “My readers are always fantasy-casting my books, but I’ve never done that,” she said. “But I’m so excited that Margaret got a funny, sexy, sassy mom in Rachel.”
Director Fremon Craig added: “Benny has a truly amazing talent for naturalism and I’m elated to have his collaboration on this film.”
With an estimated budget of $30 million, Lionsgate is believed to start filming Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret in Charlotte, North Carolina, this April.
Words by Alexandria Slater
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