Casey Affleck, Zooey Deschanel, Walton Goggins, Chris Messina to Star in Music Drama Dreamin Wild

Director Bill Pohlad has enlisted a starry ensemble for “Dreamin’ Wild,” his upcoming indie movie about musicians Donnie and Joe Emerson.

Casey Affleck, Zooey Deschanel and Walton Goggins will lead the call sheet, with Beau Bridges, Jack Dylan Grazer, Noah Jupe and Chris Messina rounding out the cast.

“Dreamin’ Wild” tells the true story of the Emerson family and the tumult that followed the success of their self-recorded pop-funk album of the same name, which went largely unnoticed until critics rediscovered and reappraised it decades later. Now, as an adult, Donnie is forced to confront the ghosts from the past and grapple with the emotional toll his dreams have taken on the family who supported him.

Affleck is playing Donnie in the present day, while Jupe will portray him in his teenage years. Goggins will portray Joe as an adult, and Grazer will play him in his younger days. Deschanel has been cast as Donnie’s wife Nancy, Bridges as Don Sr. and Messina as Light in the Attic Records executive Matt Sullivan.

Pohlad is writing the screenplay in addition to directing the film, which began shooting this month in Spokane, Wash. After executive producing Oscar winners like “Brokeback Mountain” and “12 Years a Slave,” Pohlad made his directorial debut with 2014’s “Love & Mercy,” a biographical drama about Beach Boys co-founder Brian Wilson that received critical acclaim.

Innisfree Pictures executive Jim Burke will produce “Dreamin’ Wild” alongside River Road’s Kim Roth and Pohlad, SPG3’s Viviana Vezzani and Karl Spoerri. Christa Workman, Dan Clifton, Steven Snyder and Casey Affleck will serve as executive producers. SPG3 will co-finance the project with River Road.

Affleck, who took home the 2017 best acting Oscar for “Manchester By the Sea,” recently produced and co-starred opposite Katherine Waterston and Vanessa Kirby in “The World to Come.” Deschanel is best known for “New Girl” and “500 Days of Summer.” Her latest big-screen role was 2016’s animated hit “Trolls,” though she voiced a small cameo in the 2020 sequel “Trolls World Tour.” Goggins just wrapped “The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey” alongside Samuel L. Jackson for Apple TV Plus, as well as the second season of “The Righteous Gemstones” for HBO. Jupe had a prominent role in “A Quiet Place Part II,” which premiered in 2021 and generated nearly $300 million at the global box office.

Messina, who appeared in the HBO mini-series “Sharp Objects” and AMC’s police procedural “The Sinner,” was recently in Netflix’s black comedic thriller “I Care A Lot” with Rosemund Pike. Grazer’s latest role was in Luca Guadagnino’s HBO limited series “We Are Who We Are.” Bridges will star opposite his daughter Emily Bridges in an adaption of Richard Boleslavsky’s 1933 novel “Acting: The First Six Lessons” and recently wrapped production Netflix’s “End of the Road.”

Pohlad and Bridges are represented by CAA. Affleck is represented by WME and Jupe is represented by CAA, Grandview, The Artist Partnership and Hansen Jacobson. Messina is represented by CAA and Management 360 and Goggins is represented by ICM and Darris Hatch Management and Production. Grazer is represented by Innovative Artists and Tanguay Talent and Entertainment and Deschanel is represented by CAA and Hansen Jacobson. Deals were brokered by Christa Zofcin Workman, co-president & COO of River Road and Wendy Heller of Heller Law Group.

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