A Quiet Passion, an upcoming British-American biographical film directed and written by Terence Davies began production in Europe in May. The film stars bisexual actress Cynthia Nixon as the reclusive American poet Emily Dickinson. The film will trace Dickinson from her early life as a precocious schoolgirl to the introverted recluse who saw only seven of her poems published during her lifetime.
Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachussetts in 1830, where she lived for much of her life. She lived quite reclusively, but had passionate correspondence with a number of close acquaintances. While she was alive, even her family members were unaware of the extent of her work. After her death, Dickinson poetry was discovered and she was acknowledged as one of the greatest American poets of all time.
Davies says that he wrote the screenplay with Cynthia Nixon in mind, and was thrilled that she was available and cast in the role. Nixon, known for her role as Miranda in Sex and the City, has been cautious about using the B-word to describe her sexuality, but she did in a recent interview with The Guardian. She told the Guardian:
“It’s a very particular thing being a film star because so much of it is sexual and about people desiring you. For me, as a bisexual, it’s really important that it doesn’t always have to be this impenetrable border between gay and straight. It’s not like two different countries.”