'Finding the Mother Tree': Amy Adams to Play Scientist Who Discovered How Trees Communicate

If you’re a casting director on the hunt for an actress to play a specialist who needs to crack a mysterious form of communication from an unexpected species, Amy Adams is your gal.

After playing that character type in Denis Villeneuve’s excellent 2016 film Arrival (and being unfortunately overlooked by the Academy), Adams is preparing to suit up for a similar type of code cracking role in a new film called Finding the Mother Tree. Except this time, it’ll be with trees instead of aliens. Oh, and this one is based on a true story. Get the details below.

Deadline reports that Adams (The Muppets, Enchanted) is set to star in Finding the Mother Tree, which is based on author Suzanne Simard‘s newly published memoir. Adams will play Simard, “a world renowned scientist and ecologist who first discovered how trees communicate underground through an immense web of fungi. Simard’s work has been praised as having ‘planetary significance’ and forever changing the way we look at trees.” The book was just published today, and according to its synopsis, Simard details “how trees, living side by side for hundreds of years, have evolved, how they perceive one another, learn and adapt their behaviors, recognize neighbors, and remember the past; how they have agency about the future; elicit warnings and mount defenses, compete and cooperate with one another with sophistication, characteristics ascribed to human intelligence, traits that are the essence of civil societies – and at the center of it all, the Mother Trees: the mysterious, powerful forces that connect and sustain the others that surround them.”

Here’s Simard doing a Ted Talk about how trees talk to each other:

In addition to playing the lead role in the movie, Adams will produce alongside Stacy O’Neil for her Bond Group production company. Jake Gyllenhaal, one of Adams’ co-stars in Nocturnal Animals, is also going to be a producer on Finding the Mother Tree, along with his Nine Stories productions partner Riva Marker. In a statement, Gyllenhaal called Simard’s book “rare and moving…part charming memoir, part crash course in forest ecology,” while Adams said it is “not only a deeply beautiful memoir about one woman’s impactful life, it’s also a call to action to protect, understand and connect with the natural world.”

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