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Berlin: Lionsgate U.K. Acquires British Rights for ‘Ghost Stories’

Lionsgate U.K. has acquired U.K. distribution rights to “Ghost Stories,” based on the Olivier nominated supernatural stage production, co-written and directed by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman, and set to star Martin Freeman (“The Hobbit” franchise, “Captain America: Civil War,” TV’s “Fargo”) and BAFTA award-winner George MacKay (“Pride,” “Sunshine on Leith”), with Andy Nyman reprising his role as Professor Goodman. Principal photography will start in September.

Phillip Goodman, professor of psychology and arch-sceptic has his rationality tested to the hilt when he receives a letter apparently from beyond the grave. His mentor Charles Cameron, the “original” TV parapsychologist, went missing 15 years before, presumed dead and yet now he writes to Goodman saying that the pair must meet.

Cameron, it seems, is still very much alive. And he needs Goodman to find a rational explanation for three unsolved cases that have shaken Cameron to his core. As Goodman investigates, he meets three haunted people, each with a tale more frightening, uncanny and inexplicable than the last. Gradually, Goodman unearths a hidden truth more terrifying still that will pull his life apart.

Jeremy Dyson is best known as a member of sketch comedy team “The League of Gentlemen,” along with Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith, which started as a stage act and went on to become a BAFTA Award-winning TV series. He also co-wrote and directed Sky Arts hit series “Psychobitches,” which won the 2015 Rose D’or for best comedy.

Nyman’s acting career has included roles in many films including “Death at a Funeral,” “Kick Ass 2,” “Severance,” “Automata” and “Black Death.” Nyman is a co-writer and director of magician and illusionist Derren Brown’s TV and stage shows, including “Russian Roulette,” “Séance” and “Messiah.” Their collaborations have been nominated for and won both BAFTA and Olivier awards.

“Ghost Stories” will be produced by Claire Jones (“Sightseers,” “Kill List”), along with Robin Gutch (“’71,” “Kill List”) for production company Warp Films. Warp’s recent credits include “’71,” directed by Yann Demange (Official Competition, Berlin, co-produced with Crab Apple Films), and other titles such as Chris Morris’ “Four Lions,” Richard Ayoade’s “Submarine” and Shane Meadows’ film and TV franchise “This is England.” The company’s most recent production was “The Last Panthers” for Sky Atlantic and Canal Plus.

The stage production of “Ghost Stories” broke box office records when it opened at the Liverpool Playhouse and Lyric Hammersmith, before transferring to the West End’s Duke of York’s theater and later playing Toronto, Moscow, Sydney, Shanghai and Lima, Peru.

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