Joanna Gleason Will Make Feature Writing and Directing Debut with “The Grotto”

Joanna Gleason is making her way from the enchanted forests of fairy tales to “The Grotto.” The actress — who won a Tony for her work in the original run of “Into the Woods” — will make her feature writing and directing debut with “The Grotto,” “a story where grief, laughter, and music bring about small miracles,” Deadline reports.

“The Grotto” sees 40-something Alice learning more about her late fiancé’s secret past after inheriting a nightclub in the Mojave Desert.

Casting is to be announced on the project, which will kick off production later this month. Gleason’s 18 High Street Films is producing alongside Ouroboros Entertainment and T42 Entertainment. Gleason and T42 previously collaborated on her 2020 short “Morning Into Night.”

“As the reality of the pandemic dawned, I found myself in a state of high anxiety and a shared world grief. How to feel like life could move forward?” Gleason said in a statement. “Writing/directing this film was the answer for me. I wanted to continue to push myself creatively, tell a story on screen and join other women who have discovered their ‘second acts.’”

“My company mission is to foster an environment for women to collaborate and flourish,” Ouroboros Entertainment’s Laure Sudreau explained. “It’s an honor to work with Joanna Gleason to achieve that goal.”

Gleason also received Tony nominations for her turns in “A Day in the Death of Joe Egg” and “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.” She has appeared in dozens of screen projects including “The West Wing,” “King of the Hill,” and “Sensitive Skin.” She previously directed episodes of “Love & War” and “The Louie Show.”

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