Nicolas Cage to Direct and Star in Thriller Based on Joyce Carol Oates’ ‘Rape: A Love Story’

Nicolas has signed on to direct and star in Vengeance: A Love Story, a film adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates’ 2003 novel Rape: A Love Story.

Cage had signed on to play a detective in the film a month before taking on the film’s direction, according to Variety. Harold Becker, an executive producer on the film, was originally set to direct.

Oates’ 2003 novel follows Teena Maguire, a 30-something single mother, through the events following her sexual assault. This includes her attacker’s trial, as well as a relationship she develops with a policeman — who will be played by Cage in the film — who supports her throughout.

“I’m excited to work on Vengeance: A Love Story and bring Joyce Carol Oates’ bittersweet novel to the screen,” Cage said. “Storytelling has always been my passion and I’m honored to work with this talented team to tell a tale of the suffering too many women have endured.”

Though details on the adapted story are scarce, reports described the film as a “thriller,” implying it may focus on Cage’s character seeking to arrest the Maguire’s attackers, rather than emotional subtleties of the source material.

Vengeance will serve a second chance for Cage’s directing career. Cage’s first film behind the camera, Sonny, was largely panned by critics. The 2002 indie starred James Franco as a male prostitute in New Orleans trying to change his life.