Tessa Thompson To Star In Steve Buscemi’s ‘The Listener’

Per Deadline, Tessa Thompson is starring in The Listener, the latest directorial effort from Steve Buscemi, which just wrapped production under the cover of secrecy. Why? It contains only one on screen role.

The film tells the story of Beth, a helpline volunteer who is part of the small army that gets on the phone every night, fielding calls from all kinds of people feeling lonely, broken, hopeless, and worried. The tide has become a tsunami over the last year, and as Beth goes through her shift, the stakes rise: is this the night she will lose someone?

Alessandro Camon (The Messenger) has written the film, which was shot in Los Angeles in August and September.

It sounds similar to The Guilty, just released to Netflix, as well as 2013 Halle Berry thriller The Call, which followed a 911 operator trying to track a serial killer. Except The Listener sounds like it will be a lot quieter than those two movies.

Hantz Motion Pictures served as the sole financier on the film, while Verve is handling domestic sales, which will look to premiere The Listener and shop it for acquisition at a major film festival next year.

Buscemi is best known as an actor, but has dabbled in directing over his career. He usually chooses low key indie dramas as his projects, such as Trees Lounge and Lonesome Jim, though he also directed episodes of The Sopranos, Nurse Jackie, and 30 Rock.

Thompson will soon be seen in Rebecca Hall‘s black-and-white Netflix drama Passing alongside Ruth Negga and André Holland, due later this year, while she’ll also reprise her role as Valkyrie in Thor: Love and Thunder, which is scheduled to hit cinemas next May.


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