A film version of Philip Roth's 1997 "American Pastoral" has been in the works for ages -- since about the time it won the
McGregor will play the novel's Seymour "Swede" Levov, a man of solid postwar New Jersey stock seeking the American ideal, whose family life is turned inside out by the political upheavals of the late 1960s.
The movie will be directed by Phillip Noyce ("Rabbit-Proof Fence,"
McGregor has regularly appeared in literary adaptations, from 1996's
Over the decades, a few of Roth's novels have been made into films with mixed success. Richard Benjamin starred in both "Goodbye Columbus" (1969), which was nominated for an adapted screenplay Oscar for Arnold Schulman, and Portnoy's Complaint (1972). Many years later later there came "The Human Stain" (2003) and "Elegy" (2008).
"American Pastoral" is slated to begin filming in 2015.