CANNES, France — Julian Schnabel will direct a film about Vincent van Gogh starring Willem Dafoe as the Dutch post-impressionist master.

The film, titled “At Eternity’s Gate,” was announced Saturday at the Cannes Film Festival by production company Rocket Science. The film is to focus on Van Gogh’s period in Auvers-sur-Oise and Arles, France, where the artist was living when he famously cut off his ear.

Schnabel said the film is “about painting, and a painter, and their relationship to infinity.” He said it’s not an official history but Schnabel’s version that spans what he considers the “essential moments” of Van Gogh’s life.

Schnabel, the director of “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” has previously made films about the artist Jean-Michel Basquiat and the poet Reinaldo Arenas.

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