The Wife, an electrifying drama – an adaptation by Jane Anderson of Meg Wolitzer’s 2003 book of the same name – explores how female sacrifice is often the price for male success and stars the six-time Oscar nominee Glenn Close as Joan Castleman, the wife and supporter of husband, Joe (Jonathan Pryce), a charismatic and successful writer.
Berlin Silver Bear winner Runge explains how he got involved in the project: “I read the script and recognised the great dialogue, strong characters and an interesting wholeness. In addition, I saw it as an excellent opportunity for Glenn Close to do great work and to truly showcase her talents. To be a part of all of this made it a very easy decision for me.”
The Wife opens as the couple first receives the news that Joe has won the Nobel Prize for Literature. As her husband prepares to accept the prize, Joan – the perfect alpha wife – begins to realise what she has lost while fanning the flames of her husband’s literary career.
Through flashbacks, the film illustrates the ambition that Joan had as a college student – with younger Joan played by Close’s real-life daughter, Annie Starke – and how her own writing career, once seen as very promising, ended so she could support her husband and raise a family.
But as the pair head to Sweden to accept the prize, tensions begin to boil and the woman who has spent years in her husband’s shadow is ready to step into the light. Complicating an already tense situation further is an aggressive biographer, who has followed them all the way to Stockholm, and who is intent on chronicling Joe’s life.
“In my view, The Wife features career best performances by both Glenn Close and Jonathan Pryce. As a director, it’s been a true privilege to work with these gifted actors to make the script come alive in the absolute best way,” says Runge.
“It was probably one of the trickiest roles I’ve ever confronted,” says Close about the part, which required her to convey a complex protagonist’s narrative from the shadows. “I think it’s a situation that every woman can relate to, whether they’re of younger generations or not. I’m very proud of the film because I think it speaks to the subtleties of the male-female relationship, and women who have defined themselves through men to their detriment,” she adds.
FILM: THE WIFE
CAST: Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Max Irons, Christian Slater
DIRECTOR: Björn Runge
WIN WIN WIN
We have 2 sets of movie tickets plus the book up for grabs. Simply email us your contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org with The Wife in the subject line. Winners will be contacted via email on Wednesday 29 August 2018.