After breaking out in a big way with his 2012 disaster drama The Impossible, filmmaker J.A. Bayona opted for some very curious follow-up projects. He next directed the first two episodes of the Showtime series Penny Dreadful, then he signed on to helm the zombie sequel World War Z 2. But before taking on the big franchise film, Bayona decided to make something a bit smaller: an adaptation of the Patrick Ness children’s fantasy novel A Monster Calls. The picture is currently in post-production, but the first images have arrived that tease the interesting fantasy film.
The story revolves around a 13-year-old boy named Conor (Lewis MacDougall) who, in an effort to relieve stress brought on by bullying and his mother’s terminal illness, escapes to a fantastical world thanks to a tree monster. Felicity Jones and Toby Kebbell play his parents, Sigourney Weaver fills the role of his grandmother, and in a fantastic bit of casting, Liam Neeson plays the aforementioned monster.
In the first images, which arrived by way of scans from the Spanish magazine Fotogramas (via Collider reader Fran), we see Neeson in a full motion-capture suit in front of a little statue of Conor as he’s receiving direction from Bayona. The other images also show a terrified Weaver, and I’m incredibly eager to see what kind of fantastical imagery Bayona has up his sleeve.
For now, take a look at the Fotogramas magazine scans below, but we’ll have to wait a while to see anything from the finished film. A Monster Calls is slated for release on October 14, 2016.