Earlier this week, Leos Carax fans and lovers of weird films in general were overjoyed to learn that the director’s musical, titled Annette, is officially happening with (we thought) Rihanna and Adam Driver set to star. But now it appears that only Driver is left, as Rihanna’s representatives say that the initial report is wrong, and she’s not signed on to the movie after all.

Pitchfork reports that Rihanna’s publicist told them Variety’s initial article about Annette is false. The movie was originally going to star Driver, Rihanna, and Rooney Mara, but Mara’s had to bow out due to a scheduling conflict. Now, Rihanna has also exited the project, but we don’t know the exact reason. And then there was one. I have no doubt Adam Driver, with all his many talents, could totally pull off a one-man musical, but it’s probably a good idea for Carax to start casting around for other actors to replace the ones he’s lost.

We’re pretty bummed out by this news, as Rihanna would have been absolutely mesmerizing to watch onscreen. At least she’ll definitely be in the new season of Bates Motel and Luc Besson’s weird and wonderful-looking Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets this summer. Carax’s Annette will be the screenwriting debut of musical band Sparks, who also wrote the original songs for the movie, and Carax’s very first straight-up musical. He’s had stand-alone musical numbers in movies before — a standout being Holy Motorsaccordion band interlude — but he’s never done an actual musical until now. Fingers crossed he fills out his cast quickly and gets going on this, so that it doesn’t end up one of those Sisyphean movie legends stuck in development hell.


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