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Director Gerard lands Dakota Fanning for his big Hollywood break

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Irish director Gerard Barrett is continuing to cement his place in Hollywood as he has landed his biggest project to date just days before his Sundance debut.

The Kerry director is set to work with Dakota Fanning on a silver screen adaptation of the memoir Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness.

The book is an adaptation of Susannah Cahalan's struggle with mental health problems. Fanning will portray the lead character as she struggles with her inner torment.

Bestseller Brain On Fire begins with Cahalan's admission to a psychiatric facility at just 24 years of age.

It has been picked up by Hollywood star Charlize Theron's production company Denver and Delilah Films.

The Monster star will act as a producer on the movie but it has not yet been announced if she will also take up a role in the flick.

Barrett (inset) said he was "honoured" to bring Cahalan's story to life with two of Hollywood's leading ladies.

The Pilgrim's Hill filmmaker is no stranger to tackling tough subjects on screen. His first two features both focused on sensitive plots. His second, Glasslands, will be screened at the prestigious Sundance film festival to compete in the World Cinema Dramatic Competition.

The film, starring Jack Reynor and Toni Collette, depicts the story of a young Irish taxi driver who gets caught up in the world of human trafficking.

Talented Barrett will also pen the screen adaption of the harrowing tale told in the Cahalan's memoir.

Shooting is due to begin in May in both Vancouver and New York.


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