Ed Norton has written and directed a new period crime movie in which he also stars, and he’s managed to get loads of other big-name actors to join him.
The film, Motherless Brooklyn, takes place in 1950s New York and stars Norton as a private detective named Lionel Essrog who suffers from Tourette Syndrome, which causes him to frequently tic and shout involuntarily. He also has a brilliant but unfocused mind, until he meets an older detective named Frank Minna (Bruce Willis) who takes him under his wing and helps him channel his natural intelligence. After Minna is gunned down, Lionel sets out to solve his murder on his own, running across all sorts of characters along the way who are embodied by stars such as Alec Baldwin, Willem Dafoe, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Bobby Cannavale, and Leslie Mann. You can check out the first trailer below.
The movie is based on the novel of the same name by Jonathan Lethem, which was first published in 1999. Norton apparently has been interested in adapting it to film since he first read it two decades ago, but it took a lot of work to get the story to screen. The biggest change in the transition that fans of the book will undoubtedly notice is the setting, which has been moved from the present day (or, well, 1999) to the 1950s, a period Warner Bros. refers to as “a time of great change in New York City.”
Motherless Brooklyn is set to hit theaters on Nov. 1.