Bruce Willis, Alec Baldwin Join Ed Norton Film 'Motherless Brooklyn'

Left, Gilbert Carrasquillo, right, Jason LaVeris, both Getty Images
Bruce Willis (left), Alec Baldwin

Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Cherry Jones also join Willem Dafoe in Norton's passion project, which has started production in New York City.

Bruce Willis and Alec Baldwin have joined Willem Dafoe in Edward Norton's Motherless Brooklyn.

Norton's passion project, an adaptation of Jonathan Lethem's detective novel that Norton is directing and also starring in, has started production in New York City for Class 5 Films and MWM Studios.

Set against the backdrop of 1950s New York, Motherless Brooklyn follows Lionel Essrog (Norton), a private detective with Tourette syndrome as he tries to solve the murder of his mentor and only friend, Frank Minna, played by Willis. Armed only with a few clues and his obsessive mind, Essrog unravels closely guarded secrets that hold the fate of the entire city in the balance. The ensemble cast includes Ethan Suplee, Leslie Mann, Josh Pais, Fisher Stevens, Michael K. Williams and Robert Wisdom.

Producer credits on the pic are shared by Bill Migliore, Gigi Pritzker and Rachel Shane. Executive producers are Michael Bederman, Adrian Alperovich, Sue Kroll, Robert F. Smith, Brian Sheth and Daniel Nadler.

Motherless Brooklyn will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros.