You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

BBC Films, Robert Shapiro to Produce ‘The Children of Willesden Lane’

Mona Golabek played her mother, Lisa Jura, in a stage version of 'The Children of Willesden Lane'

LONDON — BBC Films has partnered with Robert Shapiro, who was an exec producer on “Empire of the Sun,” to produce the movie adaptation of the book by Mona Golabek and Lee Cohen, “The Children of Willesden Lane.” The film tells the true story of Lisa Jura, a brilliant young pianist who fled pre-war Vienna on the Kindertransport for England to start a new life.

In 1938, Lisa’s father has won a ticket on the Kindertransport in a poker game and he and Lisa’s mother face an impossible choice: which of their three daughters will escape the horror of pogrom following the devastation of Kristallnacht. Lisa is chosen, in part, because of her exceptional musical talent, and, before long, finds herself living in a North London boarding house presided over by the charismatic Mrs. Cohen. Surrounded by children who are in the same boat as she is, Lisa begins to see that in her musical gift lies a future for her and some solace for them all.

The screenplay is written by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse (“Race,” “Frankie & Alice”), the project will be produced by Shapiro (“Black Beauty”), and executive produced by Christine Langan and Ed Wethered for BBC Films.

A stage production, performed by Lisa Jura’s daughter, Mona Golabek, has recently had a sold out run at the St. James Theatre in London, after sold out runs in New York, Chicago, Boston, Berkeley, Los Angeles and San Diego.

More Film

  • Brett Leonard Boards 'Elijah'

    Film News Roundup: 'Lawnmower Man' Director Brett Leonard Boards 'Elijah'

    In today’s film news roundup, “Elijah” gets a director, a French fry documentary starts shooting and “Uglydolls” moves its release date forward. PROJECT LAUNCH Brett Leonard, best known for directing ”The Lawnmower Man” and “Virtuosity,” will direct the supernatural feature film “Elijah,” based on the Old Testament prophet. The project is set up at Winter [...]


    SAG-AFTRA Commercial Negotiations Set for February

    With no fanfare, SAG-AFTRA and the ad industry have set a mid-February start for negotiations for a successor deal to the union’s master contract, Variety has learned. The current three-year deal — which covers about $1 billion in annual earnings — expires on March 31. SAG-AFTRA and the Joint Policy Committee of the ad industry [...]


    Oscar Nominee Sondra Locke Dies at 74

    Actress and director Sondra Locke, who received a supporting actress Oscar nomination in her first movie role for “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter,” died Nov. 3 at 74. The Los Angeles County Public Health Department confirmed her death. She died due to breast and bone cancer, according to Radar Online, which reported that she [...]

  • Clint Eastwood and Alison Eastwood'The Mule'

    Clint Eastwood: Why Alison Eastwood Came Out of Acting Retirement for Her Dad

    Clint Eastwood’s daughter Alison Eastwood was done with acting after appearing in 2014’s “Finding Harmony.” Or so she thought. It was a Friday night and she and her husband were heading to dinner when her father’s producer Sam Moore called. “He [says], ‘You know, your dad wants you to do this film,” Alison recalls. “I [...]

  • 'Dead Women Walking' Review: Uncompromising, Powerful

    Film Review: 'Dead Women Walking'

    The sober and gripping “Dead Women Walking” focuses on the final days of a series of female inmates facing the death sentence. Divided into nine chapters, each inching its way inexorably closer to the moment of execution, the drama turns the fragmentation of its approach to a powerful advantage. Not only do the individual stories [...]

  • Sam Mendes

    Sam Mendes' World War I Drama '1917' Set for Awards-Season Launch on Christmas 2019

    Universal Pictures has given an awards-season release date of Dec. 25, 2019, to Sam Mendes’ World War I drama “1971.” Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Partners is producing “1917” through its DreamWorks Pictures brand. “1917” will open in limited release on Christmas Day then go wide two weeks later on Jan. 10, 2020. Mendes wrote the script [...]

  • Ventana Sur Queer Latin Film Panel

    Ventana Sur: Panel Talks Merits, Setbacks in Latin Queer Cinema

    BUENOS AIRES — Four venerable professionals from the cinema world joined on Monday evening for Queer Cinema In Latin America, a frank discussion on Latin America’s role within the queer filmscape for Ventana Sur’s Industry conference series held at the UCA campus in Buenos Aires. Touching on advancements in character arc and notable achievements in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content