Dragon Tattoo star joins Todd Haynes’ period lesbian drama opposite Cate Blanchett; spring 2014 shoot planned.

Ronney Mara is newly attached to star opposite Cate Blanchett in Todd Haynes’ Carol.

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Produced by Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley from Number 9 Films, the drama is due to start shoot in spring 2014. TWC nabbed US rights during Cannes.

Mia Wasikowska was previously attached.

Phyllis Nagy’s script is based on Patricia Highsmith’s novella The Price of Salt about the burgeoning relationship between two very different women in 1950s New York. One, a girl in her 20s working in a department store who dreams of a more fulfilling life, and the other, a wife trapped in a loveless, moneyed marriage desperate to break free.

It is co-developed and co-financed by Film4. Christine Vachon’s Killer Films will co-produce.

HanWay is handling international sales which include TWC in the US, eOne in Canada, Icon in Australia and TF1 in France.

Haynes said: “We’re over the moon to have Rooney on board. I’ve been a tremendous admirer of her work from the beginning, so the thought of bringing her together with Cate onscreen is thrilling to say the least.”

Karlsen added: “Rooney Mara is one of the most interesting and striking young talents working today.

“There are few actors who have the weight to play against someone with the extraordinary distinction and mercurial range of Cate Blanchett and she is one of them.  The combination of them both is something potentially sensational.

“It is a testament to Todd Haynes as a director and the quality of the script that we have managed to attract this exciting calibre of actor.”