Tim Blake Nelson Joins Ang Lee's 'Billy Lynn' and James Franco's 'The Long Home' (Exclusive)

Tim Blake Nelson

The project will mark Nelson's seventh collaboration with Franco.

Tim Blake Nelson is joining two hot projects: Ang Lee's Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk and James Franco's The Long Home.

TriStar and Film4 are partnering with Studio 8 on Billy Lynn, which is an adaptation of Ben Fountain's novel. Newcomer Joe Alwyn is starring in the project along with Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart and Vin Diesel.

Simon Beaufoy wrote the screenplay. The film centers around a 19-year-old private (Alwyn) who survives a battle in Iraq, which is captured by news cameras. He and his company of soldiers are brought back to the U.S. for a promotional tour culminating in a halftime show at a Thanksgiving Day football game. Most of the movie takes place during the day of the game, with flashbacks to the wartime events. It's currently filming and set for release on Nov. 11, 2016.

Nelson will play Wayne Foster in the film, which is based on the acclaimed best-selling novel.

As for The Long Home, the project will mark Nelson's seventh collaboration with Franco, who is directing and producing. His other Franco collaborations include As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury.

Based on the novel by William Gay, the 1940s-set The Long Home centers on a young contractor who is hired to build a honky-tonk in Tennessee by the man who killed his father. Josh Hutcherson was recently cast.

Nelson will play the role of a bootlegging patriatch named Hovington. 

Franco is producing alongside Vince Jolivette and Jay Davis of Rabbit Bandini, while Robert Halmi Jr. and Jim Reeve are exec producing.

Nelson, whose long list of credits also includes The Homesman, Lincoln and Big Miracle, most recently wrote, produced and directed the film Anesthesia, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. The film, which stars Kristen Stewart, Sam Waterston, Glenn Close and Corey Stoll, centers on intersecting storylines in the aftermath of the violent mugging of a Columbia University philosophy professor. His other upcoming films include Fox’s Fantastic Four and comedy The Confirmation with Clive Owen. He's repped by UTA, Gateway Management Company and Bloom Hergott.