Hollywood is abuzz this week with the news that Thomasin McKenzie will be playing the role of Olympic gymnast Kerri Strug in the upcoming biopic Perfect. The film will narrate the epic account of Strug’s 1996 Olympic performance in Atlanta, when she made a winning vault despite a serious ankle injury, a feat that netted the first gold medal for a U.S. gymnastics team.
McKenzie, a 20-year-old New Zealander, made her much-acclaimed film debut in Leave No Trace, directed by Debra Granik. She also appeared in Jojo Rabbit and True History of the Kelly Gang. Among her upcoming projects will be a role in a BBC adaptation of Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life. She is the daughter of actress Miranda Harcourt and the director Stuart McKenzie. Her grandmother, Dame Kate Harcourt, is also a noted actress.
The biopic, to be produced by Searchlight, will be directed by Olivia Wilde from a script by Ronnie Sandahl. The script is based on the prose account Landing on My Feet, a Diary of Dreams, written by Sandahl and John P. Lopez. Perfect, the film adaptation, is scheduled to go into production at the beginning of 2022. Wilde, who made her directorial debut with Booksmart, is currently at work on Don’t Worry Darling.
The daughter of journalist Alexander Cockburn and Leslie Cockburn, a 60 Minutes producer. Wilde also has writing and acting credits. She made her Broadway debut in 2017, playing the role of Julia in 1984. She also appeared in several films, including, Her, A Vigilante, and Life Itself.
Searchlight Pictures, founded in 1994 as Fox Searchlight Pictures, is part of The Walt Disney Studios. Since then, Searchlight titles have grossed over $5.3 billion worldwide and have won dozens of major awards including four Best Picture winners since 2009: Slumdog Millionaire, 12 Years a Slave, Birdman, and The Shape of Water.