Jeff Bridges, Dave Bautista, Bryan Cranston, Sam Elliott & More Set For Live-Action ‘Grendel’ Movie

Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heart) will play the title role in Grendel, a live-action monster flick from The Jim Henson Company, for which Palisades Park Pictures is launching international sales ahead of Cannes.

Grendel is the tale of the legendary monster at the heart of the Beowulf epic poem who steps forth to tell his side of this riveting story. Directed by Robert D. Krzykowski (The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot), the film’s ensemble also includes Dave Bautista (Dune: Part Two) as Beowulf, Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) as King Hrothgar, Sam Elliott (A Star is Born) as The Dragon, Thomasin McKenzie (Last Night in Soho) as Queen Wealhtheow, and Aidan Turner (The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies) as Unferth. In addition to playing the role of The Shaper, famed recording artist and record producer T Bone Burnett will provide original songs for the film.

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Krzykowski adapted the script from John Gardner’s critically acclaimed novel of the same name. Producers on the project include Brian Henson (The Muppet Christmas Carol, Farscape) and Vince Raisa (The Happytime Murders) for The Jim Henson Company, Krzykowski and Jay Glazer (Body Language, Get Luke Lowe), who together acquired the rights to the novel in 2020, Dennis Berardi (Monster Hunter, Frankenstein), and Jon D. Wagner (Bone Tomahawk, Haunt).

Exec producers include Bridges, John Sayles (Lone Star, Eight Men Out), Tamara Birkemoe, and Joe Jenckes of Ashland Hill Media Finance. Palisades Park Pictures are launching international sales at the upcoming Marché du Film, with CAA Media Finance and UTA Independent Film Group co-repping rights for North America. Ashland Hill Media Finance is financing, with Jim Henson’s Creature Shop (Five Nights at Freddy’s, Where the Wild Things Are) to handle the practical creature work and design. Production is slated to kick off in Europe later this year.

Grendel represents everything I love about the movies,” Krzykowski said. “John Gardner’s mad masterpiece cleverly tackles what it is to be human through the wild-eyed lens of a monster. It’s an honor to work with such a remarkable group of storytellers, all of whom seek to bring something wonderful and unexpected to audiences now.”

Stated Palisades Park Pictures CEO Tamara Birkemoe, “We are delighted to be introducing this elevated, high-concept story to our distributors around the world. With this brilliant cast, Bob’s vivid vision and the extraordinary creative track record of our friends at The Jim Henson Company, we cannot wait to see Grendel come to life.”

Other feature titles on the Palisades’ Cannes sales slate include The Magic Faraway Tree starring Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy; That’s Amore! starring John Travolta, Katherine Heigl and Christopher Walken; Philip Noyce’s action-adventure Fast Charlie starring Pierce Brosnan, Morena Baccarin and James Caan; and Neil Marshall’s action thriller Duchess, starring Charlotte Kirk, Philip Winchester, Sean Pertwee, Colm Meaney and Stephanie Beacham.

Bridges is repped by CAA, MGMT Entertainment, Special Artists Agency and Hirsch Wallerstein Hayum;  Bautista by CAA, Meisner Entertainment Group, and Jackoway Austen Tyerman; Cranston by UTA and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole; Elliott by Gersh and Berwick & Kovacik; McKenzie by UTA, Untitled Entertainment, Gail Cowan Management and Johnson Shapiro Slewett & Kole; Turner by Curtis Brown Group, Lisa Richards, and Felker Toczek Suddleson; Burnett by LJ Entertainment; and Krzykowski by Neon Kite, Verve, and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman.

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