Asked why the project took so long to reach the screen, Roth points to the script's large cast and complex plotting, but reveals that a big obstacle was finding an actor to play the role of Edward Wilson.
"There was really no one who could play it until certain actors came of age," he says. The writer is delighted with Damon’s work, but notes that he couldn’t have played the part a decade ago. "This is a very tortured character, someone who has to wrestle with his soul. Matt gives a tremendous performance. Not flamboyant; this is the kind of guy who recedes into himself. I think it's one of the more difficult acting jobs I’ve seen."