A story of sexual repression and 1960s social mores, On Chesil Beach will see its director, Dominic Cooke (The Hollow Crown), overseeing a tale of two young lovers, Florence Ponting (Ronan) and Edward Mayhew (Howle), trying to overcome a particularly ferocious case of awkwardness as they begin their lives together.
"I'm very excited about working with Billy on this brilliantly written role," says Cooke of his new male lead in a statement. "He has the perfect mix of charisma, intelligence and vulnerability for Edward and is a subtle and intelligent actor. The chemistry between him and Saoirse is electric and I can’t wait to start working with them both."
Howle will be appearing on movie screens soon in two other literary adaptations, Julian Barnes' The Sense Of An Ending and Chekov's The Seagull. The latter also stars Saoirse Ronan, so they should both be firm friends by the time they head to the seaside for this one.
Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley (Carol) are producing On Chesil Beach for Number 9 Films.