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The End of Getting Lost: cast, plot and everything we know so far

‘Normal People’s Paul Mescal + Margaret Qualley = a super-buzzy new thriller

Phil de Semlyen
Written by
Phil de Semlyen

It’s a rare book-to-screen adaptation that makes you sit up and pay attention before the book has even been published, let alone the cameras started rolling. But The End of Getting Lost is one of those too-buzzy-to-wait kinda projects that you kinda need to start talking about as soon as possible. With Normal People’s Paul Mescal and Fosse/Verdon’s Emmy-nominated Margaret Qualley already on board (and Qualley producing), it has a buzzy cast and a storyline that offers an intriguing mix of romance, psychological thriller and travelogue. Think Before Sunrise if Patricia Highsmith had had a story credit. 

When is The End of Getting Lost out?

The film is still at an early stage of pre-production and the release date remains TBC, but it’s being made by Amazon and will land on the streaming platform in due course.

Who is starring in The End of Getting Lost?

Normal People’s Paul Mescal is playing Duncan, an ambitious composer, opposite Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood’s Margaret Qualley, who was ace in Netflix’s Maid. Qualley plays Duncan’s partner, Gina, a dancer who met her husband at Yale. The casting is exciting for a number of reasons, not least for the intriguing alchemy that might come when Mescal’s twinkly charm and roguish smarts, and Qualley’s sensitive but bullshit-free on-screen presence are in come together.  

The End of Getting Lost
Photograph: RICARDO HUBBS/NETFLIX © 2021Margaret Qualley in ‘Maid’

Who else is involved in The End of Getting Lost?

The movie will be a The Lost Daughter reunion of sorts. Producer Dakota Johnson co-starred in Netflix’s Oscar-nominated motherhood drama opposite Mescal and the two are linking up again here, with Johnson producing.

It’s a team-up of acting dynasties: Qualley is Andie MacDowell’s daughter, and Johnson, of course, is the daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith.

Is The End of Getting Lost based on a book? 

It is – it takes as its source material a brand new novel by Yale graduate Robin Kirman. The book, published on February 15 via Simon & Schuster, is described by its publisher as a ‘novel is about well-meaning people behaving terribly; about what we’ll do for love – and what we’ll do to protect it’. You can read an extract here.

The End of Getting Lost
Photograph: Simon & Schuster

What is The End of Getting Lost about?

Set in the pre-cellphone 1990s, the story follows a young Yale grad, Gina (Qualley), a professional dancer from New York, and her composer hubbie, Duncan (Mescal), as they cross Europe on honeymoon. All seems sweet between them, but is it? Gina is recuperating from a head injury she’s suffered in Berlin, but the cause of it remains cloudy and she’s relying on her husband to fill in the blanks. The potential for deception and gaslighting is, of course, very real in a relationship whose true power dynamics will reveal themselves during the film. 

The novel shifts perspective between the two characters as it moves back and forward in time. Expect the movie to follow suit to play with the narrative viewpoints of its two main characters, too, as the secrets and lies come out.

On paper, it sounds like Before Sunrise by way of Patricia Highsmith (or, if things get really gnarly, Alfred Hitchcock) – occupying that intriguing space between relationship drama, psychological thriller and out-and-out potboiler. It should provide plenty of jealousy-inducing European locations – the book is set in Berlin, Vienna and Zurich – and ‘90s period joys, too. Will Mescal be swapping that chunky Normal People chain for a bum bag and a Global Hypercolor t-shirt? We kinda hope so. 

Who is directing The End of Getting Lost?

Deniz Gamze Ergüven will be calling the shots on this one. The Turkish-French filmmaker caught the eye with her 2016 debut, Mustang, a live-wire feminist tale that Time Out described as ‘raw, funny and incredibly moving’ and ‘a cross between a prison-break movie, an arthouse drama and a fairy tale’. Sounds like a great pick for the material. 

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