Willem Dafoe to play painter Van Gogh in new biopic

2017-05-22 11:33

Cannes - Hollywood star Willem Dafoe is to play the painter Vincent Van Gogh in a new film about the tortured genius said artist Julian Schnabel, its producers said Sunday.

At Eternity's Gate takes its title from one of Van Gogh's last canvasses which shows a man holding his head in his hands.

"This is a film about painting and a painter and their relationship to infinity," said Schnabel, who won best director at the Cannes film festival in 2007 for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.

"It is told by a painter. It contains what I felt were essential moments in his life. This is not the official history -- it's my version," he added.

Schnabel wrote the script with acclaimed French screenwriter Jean-Claude Carriere.

The film - which will be shot in France - centres on Van Gogh's time in the southern French city of Arles and the village of Auvers-sur-Oise, near Paris.

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