May December: What We Know So Far About Todd Haynes’ New 2023 Film

Todd Haynes is set to return this year with his new film May December. But what do we know about the exciting project so far? This article is here to answer all your questions.
May December

Todd Haynes is set to return this year with his new film May December. But what do we know about the exciting project so far? This article is here to answer all your questions.

A few years ago, the writer/director almost scored his first Best Picture nomination with his period drama Carol at the 2016’s Academy Awards. Sadly, his last film Dark Waters went a bit under most people’s radar, but he is set to make his big comeback this year, with another drama: May December. Let’s take a closer look at what we know so far about the intriguing project.


Todd Haynes on the set of Carol

May December follows a married couple (Julianne Moore and Charles Melton) whose perfect life begins to crumble when an actress (Natalie Portman) arrives to research Moore’s character and her past, as she is set to play her in a movie about their May-December tabloid romance that once took the nation by storm.


Todd Haynes has yet again assembled an exciting group of actors led by Academy Award winners Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore. Portman is best known for her role as Padme Amidala in George Lucas’s Star Wars prequel trilogy. She also recently grabbed the hammer and became Thor in last year’s Thor: Love and Thunder after reprising the role of Jane Foster in multiple MCU entries. But the actress has also turned in critically acclaimed works like the horror thriller Black Swan and Jackie, for which she was both Oscar-nominated and won the latter.

Moore reunites with Todd Haynes for the fourth time after they worked together on Safe, Wonderstruck, and Far From Heaven. Moore is an Oscar and Emmy winner and has worked on many famous films like Boogie Nights, Magnolia, Children of Men, and The Big Lebowski. She also appeared in blockbusters like The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and 2, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, and Non-Stop. Charles Melton, who is best known for his role in the teen drama series Riverdale plays Moore’s husband. He also appeared in American Horror Story and the blockbuster Bad Boys For Life. He also just appeared in an episode of Rian Johnson’s hit comedy series Poker Face.


Todd Haynes and Julianne Moore

Writer/director Todd Haynes hasn’t made many movies. He started his career back in 1991 with his feature film debut Poison. Since then, he made 7 feature films over the course of 20 years. He also directed music videos and worked on a handful of TV shows. His best-known work includes Far From Heaven, for he gained an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. But Carol is probably the film most people know him for. The film starred Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara in a romance drama, for which both actresses scored an Oscar nomination. It was praised as one of the very best films of 2015.

Haynes’ latest feature film was in 2019’s based on a true story drama Dark Waters starring Mark Ruffalo. That film sadly went under most people’s radar and never became a huge awards player. For May December Haynes was not able to work with his regular cinematographer Ed Lachman, who broke his hip just before filming commenced. The upcoming film was instead shot by Christopher Blauvelt, who is best known for his collaborations with director Kelly Reichardt, as he worked on First Cow and Showing Up. The rest of the crew includes production designer Sam Lisenco (Judas and the Black Messiah), costume designer April Napier (Lady Bird), and Haynes frequent collaborators editor Affonso Gonçalves (Carol), and casting director Laura Rosenthal (Carol).


Like most of his previous work like Carol and Wonderstruck, May December was officially confirmed to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival later this month. It doesn’t have an official release date yet, but we can expect the film to premiere sometime in the fall, the perfect time to gain awards traction.

Todd Haynes recently spoke to The Film Stage about what appealed to him the most about this project:

“What so appealed to me about Samy Burch’s exceptional script was how it navigated potentially volatile subject matter with a kind of observational patience that allowed the characters in the story to be explored with uncommon subtlety.

We haven’t yet gotten a trailer, but considering the film will premiere in Cannes in a few weeks, sometimes those films get a trailer quickly after that. If that is not the case, we might have to wait until the film gets picked up by a distributor, who starts the normal marketing campaign closer to the film’s release.

Official synopsis

“Twenty years after their notorious tabloid romance gripped the nation, Gracie Atherton-Yu and her husband Joe (23 years her junior) brace themselves for their twins to graduate from high school. When Hollywood actress Elizabeth Berry comes to spend time with the family to better understand Gracie, who she will be playing in a film, family dynamics unravel under the pressure of the outside gaze. Joe, never having processed what happened in his youth, starts to confront the reality of life as an empty-nester at 36.”

Natalie Portman

What do you guys think? Are you excited about May December? Do you like Haynes’ previous work? Let us know your thoughts and follow our social media so you don’t miss a thing, we’re always watching.



Picture of Finn Schlote

Finn Schlote

Finn thinks and talks about movies all day, has a strong interest in how movies are made and he loves great cinematography. Comedy or horror, arthouse or big-budget blockbuster, Finn watches everything. He is a passionate Blu-Ray collector and is still waiting for a Jumper (2008) sequel.