Benedict Cumberbatch And Olivia Colman To Go At It In Jay Roach's 'War of The Roses'

Olivia Colman is reuniting with her “Favourite” screenwriter, Tony McNamara. The former wrote the screenplay for Yorgos Lanthimos‘ Best Picture-nominated dramedy which won Colman an Oscar and now has a new adaptation of Warren Adler‘s novel “The War of the Roses” ready for Jay Roach to direct. Benedict Cumberbatch will play the other half of the warring couple in the Searchlight Pictures release.

READ MORE: Olivia Colman blasts Hollywood pay inequality: “If I was Oliver Colman, I’d be earning a F*** of a lot more”

Searchlight’s current synopsis for the movie reads, “Life seems easy for picture-perfect couple Theo (Cumberbatch) and Ivy (Colman): successful careers, great kids, an enviable sex life. But underneath the façade of the perfect family is a tinderbox of competition and resentments that’s ignited when Theo’s professional dreams come crashing down.”

Adler’s novel was originally made into a celebrated 1989 feature film starring Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner, and Danny DeVito, who also directed. Written by Michael Leeson, it was DeVito’s directorial follow-up to “Throw Momma From The Train,” a period when R-rated comedies were making big money for Hollywood. Released by 20th Century Fox, “Roses” earned $160 million worldwide as well as BAFTA and Golden Globe nominations, but was famously snubbed by The Academy. This new version has been in development since 2017.

In a statement, Searchlight President Matthew Greenfield remarked, “’The Roses’ is a wildly funny, bigger than life, and yet deeply human story. With Jay at the helm, and Benedict and Olivia and Tony, we have a dream team bringing it to life.”

This will be Roach’s first film since 2019’s “Bombshell” which earned Charlize Theron and Margot Robbie Oscar nominations and took home the Academy Award for Makeup and Hairstyling. His other credits include “Meet the Parents,” “Trumbo,” “Game Change,” “Recount,” and the “Austin Powers” films. A four-time Emmy Award winner, he most recently directed the Apple TV+ series “High Desert.”

Colman can currently be seen in “Wicked Littler Letters” and starred in the box office smash “Wonka” this past holiday season. She previously collaborated with Searchlight on “Empire of Light” and “The Favourite,” for which she won her first Academy Award. She also earned Oscar nominations for “The Father” and “The Lost Daughter.” Her other credits include “The Lobster,” “Murder on the Orient Express,” “The Iron Lady,” “Hyde Park on the Hudson,” and the seminal BBC series “Broadchurch.” She also narrated “The Electrical Life of Louis Wain” which starred Cumberbatch.

Best known to the general public as Dr. Strange in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Cumberbatch is a two-time Oscar nominee for his roles in “The Imitation Game” and “The Power of the Dog.” His other credits include “Atonement,” “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “War Horse,” “Star Trek Into Darkness,” “1917,” BBC’s “Sherlock,” and the mini-series “Patrick Melrose,” among others. He was recently seen in the short film “The Wonderful World of Henry Sugar” which won Wes Anderson his first Academy Award.

“The War of the Roses” is set to begin production this summer for an expected 2025 release.