Anthony Minghella's Son to Make Directorial Debut With 'La La Land' Producer

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Max Minghella

Max Minghella wrote 'Teen Spirit,' telling the story of an Eastern European girl who dreams of pop stardom.

Max Minghella, son of the late Academy Award-winning director Anthony Minghella, is set to make his directorial debut with Teen Spirit, an "emotional underdog" story set in the world of pop music. 

The film, which is being unveiled to buyers at next month's European Film Market in Berlin, was written by Minghella, who starred in films including The Social Network and The Ides of Marc and made his screenwriting debut just last year with The 9th Life of Louis Drax. Fred Berger (La La Land) is producing alongside Brian Kavanaugh-Jones under their Automatik banner, while Jamie Bell, who helped develop the screenplay with Minghella, will exec produce.

Teen Spirit tells the story of a shy Eastern European teen who dreams of pop stardom to escape her small town and shattered family life. With the help of an unlikely mentor, Violet enters an international singing competition that will test her integrity, talent and ambition.

Interscope Records, which is handling the chart-topping soundtrack on La La Land, will co-produce with Automatik and will release the official soundtrack. Keeping with the music theme, Berger is bringing his team from La La Land to the project, including music producer Marius DeVries (Moulin Rouge), and music supervisor Steven Gizicki, previously of Lucasfilm. Autumn Durald, known for her work music videos for Arcade Fire and Haim, is cinematographer. 

Mister Smith will shop Teen Spirit to international buyers in Berlin. CAA is arranging financing for the film and represents its North American distribution rights. 

"Teen Spirit is a celebration of the power that music can deliver to the cinematic experience," said Minghella. "I’m thrilled to be working with the dream team of Interscope, Automatik & Mister Smith to share it with audiences."

Fred Berger added: “Max is a one-of-a-kind talent with a profound understanding for how music and cinema can move people. He brings such an exciting voice and vision to this story, and I can't wait to dive in with him and our incredible team."

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