Production has wrapped on Eva Husson’s star-studded “Mothering Sunday,” which was among the first crop of major features to start rolling cameras amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The film has now completed principal photography in the U.K., producers Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley of Number 9 Films confirmed to Variety. Rocket Science is handling international sales and is presenting the film to buyers at the American Film Market (AFM) this week.
The film — whose title references the U.K.’s loose equivalent of Mother’s Day, which takes place in March — is set in 1924. It follows Jane Fairchild (Odessa Young), a maid in the wealthy Niven household, who has the day off to celebrate Mothering Sunday while Mr. and Mrs. Niven (Colin Firth and Olivia Colman) attend a lunch to mark the engagement of their neighbor’s only remaining son, Paul (Josh O’Connor).
The day is particularly significant for Jane, an orphan at birth, who has been Paul’s lover for almost seven years. On Mothering Sunday, with the house conveniently empty, they can finally meet in Paul’s bedroom for the first time to mark their last day as lovers. “Gangs of London” star Ṣọpẹ Dìrísù will also star in the film, playing a character who becomes important to Jane later in life.
Variety has an exclusive first-look at the project, featuring Young and O’Connor as Jane and Paul (full image below).
As previously announced, Lionsgate UK is planning a theatrical release in 2021 and Sony Pictures Classics has acquired rights for North America, Latin America, India, Pan Asia (excluding Japan), the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Turkey.
“Mothering Sunday” is written by Emmy nominee Alice Birch (“Normal People,” “Succession”) and is based on the critically acclaimed, eponymous best-selling novella by Graham Swift.
Director Eva Husson’s previous projects include “Girls of the Sun” and “Bang Gang – A Modern Love Story.” She also directed episodes of Amazon’s “Hanna” series.
Meanwhile, the film’s behind-the-scenes team includes three-time Oscar-winning costume designer Sandy Powell (“The Irishman,” “Mary Poppins Returns”), BAFTA-winning hair and make-up designer Nadia Stacey (“The Favourite,” upcoming “Cruella”), BAFTA TV-nominated production designer Helen Scott (“A Very English Scandal,” “Wuthering Heights”), BIFA-nominated cinematographer Jamie Ramsay (“Moffie,” “Beauty”), and editor Emilie Orsini (“Girls Of The Sun,” “The Party”).
The film was developed with support from Film4 and the BFI awarding National Lottery funding, with financing from Film4, BFI and Lipsync. Film4 have U.K. free TV broadcast rights.
Elsewhere at the AFM, Rocket Science is also selling the Number 9 Films-produced “Living,” starring Bill Nighy and Aimee-Lou Wood, an adaptation of the 1952 classic “Ikiru,” written by Akira Kurosawa, Shinobu Hashimoto and Hideo Oguni. The film has been developed with and will be funded by Film4 and Ingenious Media, in association with Kurosawa Productions, executive producer Ko Kurosawa.