Now that the Weinstein Company has given the dystopian film a release date for summer 2014, The Giver is quickly coming together with more additions to its growing and impressive cast. Academy Award winners Jeff Bridges, who will be playing the titular The Giver, and Meryl Streep, who will be playing the film’s central villain the Chief Elder, were recently added to the cast. Australian actor Brenton Thwaites was also cast in the lead role of Jonas. Now The Giver has added two more: Katie Holmes and Taylor Swift.
The news of Holmes and Swift’s casting comes via The Hollywood Reporter and EW. Based on the award-winning young adult novel from author Lois Lowry, The Giver has a good chance to fuse young adult sensibilities with highbrow moviemaking. Holmes will reportedly play Jonas’ mother, a brainwashed citizen who believes that all rules should be followed regardless of their nature, while Swift is slated to play a teenage girl named Rosemary, the last teenager mentored by the Giver before Jonas.
Katie Holmes is best known as the first Rachel Dawes from Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins (she was later replaced with Maggie Gyllenhaal in The Dark Knight). She is also known for her role as Joey Potter on the ’90s teen TV drama Dawson’s Creek. The Giver would be one of her first films on her comeback tour after her divorce from Tom Cruise, and she will no doubt bring some insights into with brainwashing and secret societies to the role.
Taylor Swift is mainly known as a Grammy-winning country music superstar, with the hit record “Fearless” in 2008 and her hit single “Safe & Sound” (featuring The Civil Wars), from The Hunger Games soundtrack in 2012. She crossed over to the big screen in the romantic comedy Valentine’s Day in 2010 and voiced the character of Audrey in the animated film The Lorax in 2012. The Giver will be her first live-action film with a bigger role than merely a cameo.
The Giver takes place in a world where people believe they live in a utopian society, but where all emotions, history, and color have been stricken from existence. When young boys and girls come of age, they are assigned jobs and duties for the rest of their lives. The film centers on Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), a boy who is assigned to be the new Receiver of Memory, which is the world’s keeper of history. But when Jonas meets the former Receiver of Memory, who is also known as The Giver (Jeff Bridges), his world is turned upside down when he learns that life can also have colors and emotions. As part of his position, Jonas must keep his newly found knowledge a secret, so society can remain utopian” for all of its citizens.
The Giver also features Alexander Skarsgard as Jonas’ father and Cameron Monaghan as Jonas’s best friend Asher. The novel from author Lois Lowry is described as Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, but written for children and young adults.
The Giver will hit theaters everywhere on August 15, 2014.