Dakota Fanning Takes Lead Role in ‘The Bell Jar’

The folks behind the upcoming The Bell Jar adaptation are shaping up to be quite the A-team. Hollywood wunderkind Dakota Fanning will be taking on the role of protagonist, Esther Greenwood, who is largely presumed to be based on Sylvia Plath herself. 

This is not Kirsten Dunst’s first time to the directing rodeo, but it is her first film with a major studio. The Virgin Suicides (based on the Jeffrey Eugenides novel) star directed an independent film called Bastard back in 2010, but it did not make a big splash. 

Image courtesy of Pagesix

Plath fans should rest assured knowing that the project is being taken on by two seriously brilliant women, with a stellar track record of plumming the female psyche. We’d like to think the legendary poet wouldn’t have had it any other way. 


Plath tragically committed suicide in 1963 after a lifelong struggle with clinical depression. In her short career, she managed to cement herself as a seminal modern poet, and perhaps the best confessional poet of all time. The Bell Jar was her only novel. It is widely interpreted as a semi-autobiographical account of her experiences trying to jump-start a writing career in the wake of her declining mental health. 

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This will be Fanning’s second role in a classic adaptation in 2017 alone. She is also set to star in the adaptation of American Pastoraldirected by Ewan Mcgregor. 


 Feature image courtesy of Indiewire.