Deadline is reporting that Michael Collins star Liam Neeson and director Neil Jordan are set to reteam for a new film set in the competitive world of horse-racing, called The Trainer.
Per Deadline, Neeson will star as “John Moore, a premier horse trainer in the west of Ireland who, beset by tragedy, loses everything he cherishes and almost forgets to live. Into his life comes a teenage refugee, Nadya, who has fled her own horrors and now finds herself in a confounding new world. Their only connection to themselves, and ultimately to their own hearts, is a horse called Allabelle, who is about to prove that they may all have one race left inside of them.”
Viva director Paddy Breathnach was originally attached to the title when it was given development funding by the Irish Film Board in 2013. The IFB will support the film, which will be produced by Sully screenwriter Komarnicki, Arthur Lappin, Robin Gurland, and Gregory O’Connor.
Speaking on the casting, Gabrielle Stewart, managing director of HanWay Films, said:
Liam Neeson is one of the world’s most beloved actors, thanks to unforgettable performances in films ranging from Schindler’s List to Love Actually, so we’re thrilled to have Liam return to Ireland with a character-driven film like The Trainer. He and Neil are a great pairing and David Donohue’s, James Villemaire’s and Todd Komarnicki’s script provides us a beautiful and life-affirming story of a man learning to live again.
The script comes from Irish writer David Donohue, Canadian actor/director James Villemaire, and Komarnicki.
HanWay Films will shop the film to buyers at the American Film Market this week. Production on The Trainer will start in Ireland next year.
Recently Neeson has worked with Peter Landesman on Felt, having finished shooting Martin Scorsese’s Silence, J.A. Bayona’s A Monster Calls, and most recently John H. Lee’s Korean actioner Operation Chromite, where he plays General Douglas MacArthur. He will follow those up with roles in Ruben Fleischer’s The Revenger, Sean O’Keefe’s remake of The Escapist, a reteam with Jaume Collet-Serra called The Commuter, Antoine Fuqua and Brian Kirk’s Narco Sub, and Hans Petter Molland’s In Order Of Disappearance.