Everything we know so far about Paul Mescal and Josh O’Connor’s new gay film The History of Sound

Filming for The History of Sound has reportedly commenced, and here's what viewers can expect from the upcoming LGBTQ+ romance.

The History of Sound co-stars Paul Mescal and Josh O'Connor. The pair are photographed from the stomach up, looking directly into the camera and smiling.
Image: @isaaac.co.uk via Instagram

Fresh off the success of All of Us Strangers, Paul Mescal is wasting no time in diving into his next gay feature film. The Kildare native stars alongside British actor Josh O’Connor in The History of Sound, an LGBTQ+ romance set during World War I.

According to reports, filming for the production has commenced as of February 28, over two years after news of the project first emerged. While details remain limited, we’ve rounded up everything we know so far about this exciting new film!


The History of Sound is based on Ben Shattuck’s award-winning short story of the same name. It follows two young men, Lionel and David (played by Mescal and O’Connor respectively), as they aim “to record the lives, voices and music of their countrymen” during the First World War. They are deeply changed throughout the process, and as they log the events, a romance also blossoms.

Director Oliver Hermanus told Variety: “I instantly fell in love with Ben Shattuck’s flawlessly beautiful short story and knew I had to be involved in its journey to the screen. Paul and Josh are two of the most promising actors of their generation who will share with us deeply soulful performances.

“This is an unexpected love story that needs to be told – it is a journey through the life of America, across the 20th century and the traditions of American folk music, all seen through the bond between two men immersed in the history of sound. This undeniably powerful story will certainly resonate with audiences the world over.”

The film is being produced by Tim Haslam, Andrew Kortschak, Lisa Ciuffetti and Andrea Roa. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Kortschak described it as “an immense privilege” to be involved with the project.

“We are all struck by Ben’s beautiful and resonant short story, exploring love, loss and memory. We are beyond excited to adapt this story for the screen with this incredible team,” he said.

Filming was originally due to begin in the summer of 2022 across the US, UK and Italy. However, Mescal confirmed that it had been put on pause due to conflicting schedules. 

“The learning for me is that I’m just dying to make films with people I like, and Josh is one of those people that I would work with in a heartbeat,” he shared. 



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Mescal rose to fame through the show Normal People, with the BAFTA-nominated star since impressing critics in films like Aftersun, The Lost Daughter and, of course, All of Us Strangers. Josh O’Connor is an Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actor, famous for his role as a gay sheep farmer in God’s Own Country, as well as depicting Prince Charles in Netflix’s hugely popular series The Crown.

Viewers can look forward to seeing the pair star opposite each other in The History of Sound, which MUBI has slated for release in 2025.

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