Roofman | Derek Cianfrance set to direct his first film in 8 years

derek cianfrance the place beyond the pines
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Derek Cianfrance will direct Roofman, the story of Jeffrey Manchester who committed a string of bizarre robberies in the 90s.  

Derek Cianfrance, the acclaimed director behind Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond The Pines, has finally set up his next project. The news comes via Jeff Sneider’s newsletter (spotted by World Of Reel). 

The director recently left the new The Wolfman film, which will see Ryan Gosling in the title role. He originally replaced Leigh Whannell as the director, but it’s now being reported that Whannell is back in the director’s chair for Universal’s monster movie. 

With his schedule now free, Cianfrance is eyeing up the story of Jeffrey Manchester, a man who robbed McDonald’s restaurants in the 90s while living in a branch of Toys R Us. Manchester would break into the restaurants through the roof – hence the film’s title, Roofman – and wait for the early morning shift to come in, only to lock them in the walk-in freezer while he emptied out the till and escaped with the money. 

Cianfrance might be an acclaimed director, but he’s only released four films in his career. He made his directorial debut in 1998 with Brother Tied, but success followed in 2010 when he teamed up with Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams for the brilliant, devastating Blue Valentine. 

Cianfrance followed that with The Place Beyond The Pines, reuniting with Ryan Gosling and casting Bradley Cooper and Ben Mendelsohn alongside him. In that film, Mendelsohn and Gosling’s characters committed several bank robberies – Cianfrance already knows how to stage a taut heist scene, which will come in handy for Roofman. 

Cianfrance’s last film as a director was 2016’s The Light Between Oceans, which has largely been forgotten about. I remember seeing it at my local Vue and there were exactly five of us there when the film started, but only three made it through the film. 

We’ll keep you posted on progress on Roofman. 

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