Kristen Stewart has lately been protesting that her outwardly sulky, I-vant-to-be-alone demeanor is just a mask for deep sensitivity, but perhaps it’s all been method preparation for her upcoming role in On The Road: Stewart has signed on to play Marylou, Dean Moriarty’s first wife, in Walter Salles’ long-in-the-making adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s bible for the restless and disenfranchised. Of course, as anyone who’s read the book can tell you (see also: anyone who’s ever been a 16-year-old boy), Marylou is different from the sort of characters usually associated with Stewart—Kerouac describes her early on as a sweet but outwardly dumb (though surprisingly sharp and sexually manipulative) country girl, and a “pretty blonde with immense ringlets of hair like a sea of golden tresses”—so it’ll be interesting to see how much Salles allows Stewart to make the character her own.

The film is said to be shooting this summer with Sam Riley (best known for playing Ian Curtis in Control) as Sal and Garrett Hedlund (TRON: Legacy) as Dean; Salles has already proved he has a way with young men and their wanderlust in The Motorcycle Diaries, so it’s entirely possible he’ll succeed where other filmmakers like Francis Ford Coppola and Gus Van Sant have failed in bringing Kerouac’s novel to the screen. And now that Stewart’s in it, Twilight fans will have a whole new book to read!

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