“Star Wars” and "House of Gucci" actor Adam Driver has been picked to play the lead role in an Enzo Ferrari biopic set for release in 2023.
Filming is already underway, with photos from the film set live on social media. Late last week, the first official photo showing Driver as Ferrari was released.
Both Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale were previously linked to the role of il Commendatore. While both accomplished actors, the younger Driver has also shown tremendous acting range. Ignoring the somewhat dry persona he portrayed in the "Star Wars" films, he's delivered some impressive performances, for example in "Marriage Story" and the more recent "House of Gucci," in which he also played an Italian figure.
NEW pics of Adam Driver on the set of Ferrari, Oct 6, 2022 pic.twitter.com/rdi4iieam3— Adam Driver Central (@adamdrivercentl) October 7, 2022
Penelope Cruz and Shailene Woodley are also set to star in the Ferrari biopic, playing the roles of Ferrari's wife, Laura, and his mistress, Lina Lardi, respectively. Lardi is the mother of Ferrari's only surviving child, Piero Ferrari. Patrick Dempsey, an avid racer, will play racing driver Piero Taruffi.
Michael Mann, who is probably most widely recognized for his directing work in "The Last of the Mohicans" and "Heat," is the director. He's been pushing to get the project going for years and worked on the screenplay together with new-deceased screenwriter Troy Kennedy-Martin. Inspiration came from the Brock Yates-authored book “Enzo Ferrari: The Man and the Machine.”
The film will focus on Ferrari's life during the highly difficult year of 1957, when he was close to 60 years of age, hence the gray hair on Driver. That year saw a Ferrari 335S race car lose a tire during the Mille Miglia. The car careened into a crowd where it killed the driver, co-driver, and nine spectators. Ferrari, still mourning from the death of his first son, Dino, the year earlier, and teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, was put on trial for manslaughter but the case was ultimately dismissed.
Although there have been Ferrari biopics before, most notably the 2003 Italian film "Ferrari," this new film has been a Hollywood dream pretty much since Ferrari's death in 1988, and possibly even before that. For a long time, it was set to be a passion project of director Sydney Pollack, but the director passed away before that could come to be. Now it's in the hands of Mann.
Note, this is a separate film to the one linked to Robert De Niro, which was said to portray Ferrari in his later life. News of that movie came in 2015, but it isn't clear if that film will ever see the light of day.
Apple's streaming service also has a series about the Ferrari founder in the works with some big names attached.