Principal photography has begun on location in New York City on Edward Norton’s long-in-the-development passion project ‘Motherless Brooklyn,’ a noir thriller inspired by Jonathan Lethem’s novel of the same name.

In addition to directing and writing, Norton will also headline the A-list ensemble cast which includes Bruce Willis (‘Glass,’ ‘Pulp Fiction”), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (‘Belle,’ ‘The Cloverfield Paradox’), Willem Dafoe (‘The Florida Project,’ ‘Platoon’), Alec Baldwin (‘The Cooler’), Cherry Jones (‘American Crime,’ ‘Transparent’), Ethan Suplee (‘Chance,’ ‘American History X’), Leslie Mann (‘This is 40’), Josh Pais (‘Ray Donovan’), Fisher Stevens (‘Vice Principals,’ ‘Short Circuit’) Michael K. Williams (‘Assassin’s Creed,’ ‘The Wire,’ ‘Boardwalk Empire’), and Robert Wisdom (‘The Dark Knight Rises,’ ‘Ballers’).

Set against the backdrop of 1950s New York, the noir thriller follows Lionel Essrog (Norton), a lonely private detective afflicted with Tourette’s Syndrome, as he ventures to solve the murder of his mentor and only friend, Frank Minna (Willis). Armed only with a few clues and the powerful engine of his obsessive mind, Lionel unravels closely-guarded secrets that hold the fate of the whole city in the balance. In a mystery that carries him from gin-soaked jazz clubs in Harlem to the hard-edged slums of Brooklyn and, finally, into the gilded halls of New York’s power brokers, Lionel contends with thugs, corruption and the most dangerous man in the city to honour his friend and save the woman who might be his own salvation.

Producers on the project include Madison Wells Media’s Gigi Pritzker and Rachel Shane, and Norton, who will produce alongside his Class 5 Films partner Bill Migliore. Michael Bederman, Adrian Alperovich, Sue Kroll, Robert F. Smith, Brian Sheth, and Daniel Nadler are serving as executive producers.