Oates' tome used biographical and historical sources to spin a new story focusing on the inner life of Norma Jean Baker, the woman behind the screen idol and tragic starlet. The portrait emerges of a fragile, gifted young woman with a knack for reinvention, who used those skills to overcome great odds.
The book was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, and Dominik was so taken with it that he wrote the script adaptation on spec. After floating in limbo for a couple of years, it was finally snatched up by Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment, which will produce the film with Worldview Entertainment.
Chastain can certainly handle a role of this complexity, and it would hardly be her first time working blonde, as anyone who saw The Help (2011) could attest. She has several films awaiting release this year, including Miss Julie, A Most Violent Year and Interstellar, which arrives on 7 November. She's also been at work on Guillermo del Toro's (Pacific Rim) new horror, Crimson Peak.