Jeff Bridges, Bryan Cranston Starring in Jim Henson Company’s Grendel

The Jim Henson Company‘s live-action monster tale “Grendel” has rounded out its cast with Jeff Bridges in the role of Grendel, as well as Dave Bautista as Beowulf and Bryan Cranston as King Hrothgar.

Also joining the cast are Thomasin McKenzie as Queen Wealhtheow, Aidan Turner as Unferth and, as the Shaper, T Bone Burnett, who will also provide original songs for the film.

Robert D. Krzykowski (“The Man Who Killed Hitler”) directs from the screenplay he adapted from John Gardner’s novel. Palisades Park Pictures, led by CEO Tamara Birkemoe, is launching international sales ahead of Cannes on the story of the legendary monster at the heart of the Beowulf epic poem who steps forward to tell his side of the tale.

Production is set to begin later this year in Europe. Jim Henson’s Creature Shop will handle practical creature work and design.

“Grendel” is produced by Brian Henson and Vince Raisa for the Jim Henson Company, Krzykowski and Jay Glazer, who acquired the rights to the novel in 2020, Dennis Berardi and Jon D. Wagner.

Executive producers are Bridges, John Sayles, Birkemoe and Joe Jenckes of Ashland Media Finance. CAA Media Finance and UTA Independent Film Group co-rep rights for North America, while Ashland Hill Media Finance is financing.

“Grendel represents everything I love about the movies. John Gardner’s mad masterpiece cleverly tackles what it is to be human through the wild-eyed lens of a monster,” said Krzykowski in a statement. “It’s an honor to work with such a remarkable group of storytellers, all of whom seek to bring something wonderful and unexpected to audiences now.”

“We are delighted to be introducing this elevated, high-concept story to our distributors around the world,” added Tamara Birkemoe, CEO Palisades Park Pictures. “With this brilliant cast, Bob’s vivid vision and the extraordinary creative track record of our friends at The Jim Henson Company, we cannot wait to see Grendel come to life.”

Brian Henson, producer and Chair of the Board of The Jim Henson Company says, “The Jim Henson Company is internationally known for our world creation and character creation. And we are most inspired when a character has a richly authentic personality, and can be sophisticated, thought-provoking, and believable. Grendel is the ultimate character, and will be brought to life using our Creature Shop’s cutting-edge practical techniques in combination with Dennis Berardi’s amazing digital effects.”

Bridges is repped by CAA, MGMT Entertainment, Special Artists Agency and Hirsch Wallerstein Hayum Matlof & Fishman; Bautista is repped by CAA, Meisner Entertainment Group, and Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner Auerbach Hynick Jaime LeVine Sample & Klein; Cranston is repped by UTA and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole; Elliott is repped The Gersh Agency and Berwick & Kovacik; McKenzie is repped by UTA, Untitled Entertainment, Gail Cowan Management and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole; Turner is repped by Curtis Brown Group and Lisa Richards, and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson McGinnis & Ryan; Burnett is repped by Larry Jenkins of LJ Entertainment. Krzykowski is represented by Jay Glazer at Neon Kite, Verve, and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman, Smelkinson & Christopher.

Palisades Park’s Cannes slate also includes “The Magic Faraway Tree” with Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy, “That’s Amore!” starring John Travolta, Katherine Heigl and Christopher Walken, Philip Noyce’s action-adventure “Fast Charlie” starring Pierce Brosnan, Morena Baccarin and James Caan; and Neil Marshall’s action-thriller “Duchess,” starring Charlotte Kirk, Philip Winchester, Sean Pertwee, Colm Meaney and Stephanie Beacham.

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