Right now, writer/director Ben Younger has been busy promoting his latest film, Bleed For This, a boxing drama starring Miles Teller and Aaron Eckhart that has been on the receiving end of some awards buzz leading up to its release this Friday. However, back at the Toronto International Film Festival, it was reported that Younger was already set to direct Isle of Man as his next project, a motorcycle drama revolving around the dangerous Tourist Trophy race that takes place on the titular island located in the Irish Sea, between England and Ireland.
After the eleven year gap between Bleed For This and his last film, Boiler Room, it doesn’t look like Younger was planning on wasting much time deciding on his next directorial effort. Production on Isle of Man is slated to begin in June of next year, but other than Younger’s involvement, not much has been revealed about the project up until this point. However, it looks like the film’s two lead stars may have just been revealed, through some unlikely sources as well.
The news comes from MoreBikes (via /Film), which spoke with an unnamed Honda executive about the film and who revealed that Matt Damon and Liam Neeson would be starring in Isle of Man. According to the report, Damon will be playing an older racer taken out of retirement when he gets the chance to try and conquer the famous racing course at the center of the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy. There’s no word on who Neeson will be playing as of yet.
Similar to Younger’s current awards campaign for Bleed For This, both Neeson and Damon are expected to have an eventful couple of months ahead of them. Damon, for his part, has been busy promoting Amazon’s Manchester by the Sea, which he executive produced and is shaping up to be one of this year’s biggest awards contenders, and Neeson is one of the lead stars in Martin Scorsese’s Silence. The latter is currently slated for an end of the year release, and so far, despite being surrounded under a cloud of mystery, already has some serious hype going behind it.
As for Isle of Man, both actors have a strong familiarity with action and stunts in their previous projects, which it sounds like the motorcycle drama will almost certainly have. Damon, in fact, is just coming off of an extremely elaborate and critically-acclaimed motorcycle sequence in this year’s Jason Bourne – which despite receiving overall mixed reviews from the critics, had more than its fair share of impressive action sequences throughout it. So if Younger was looking for two actors that can not only deliver strong performances, but also carry the weight of some high-intensity set pieces as well, then it doesn’t seem like he could have done much better than Damon and Neeson.
Right now, there’s no official release date set for the film, but whenever it does end up coming out, Isle of Man seems like the kind of film you won’t want to miss.