Dollhouse Pictures, production company founded by Krew Boylan, Rose Byrne, Jessica Carrera, Shannon Murphy and Gracie Otto, is to produce “Devotion,” a book-to-film adaptation of Hannah Kent’s bestselling novel of the same title. The production is in partnership with production and finance firm Storyd.
The story narrates a love story between two young women in 1836 Prussia. On the verge of womanhood, the two outsiders find a kindred spirit in the other. Their Lutheran Christian community flees religious persecution in Europe and seeks resettlement and freedom in South Australia. The journey puts their faith and friendship under threat, but proves that the bond of love is unbreakable.
Devotion is the third novel from Kent and was published in 2021 by Pan Macmillan in Australia and in 2022 by Picador in the U.K. and Ireland, with translation rights picked up for Spain, Greece, Lithuania and France. The novel won Booktopia’s Favorite Australian Book, was shortlisted for an Indie Book Award, the ABIA Literary Fiction Book of the Year and the ABA Nielsen Bookdata Booksellers’ Choice Award for Adult Fiction 2022.
Both of Kent’s two previous novels, “Burial Rites” and “The Good People” are currently being adapted for the screen. Her screenwriting credits include the psychological thriller “Run Rabbit Run,” a film starring Sarah Snook (HBO’s “Succession”) and directed by Daina Reid (“The Handmaid’s Tale”) which is currently in post-production.
Kent will write the screenplay of “Devotion” and develop the project alongside the female-led team of Dollhouse Pictures’ Carrera and Storyd’s Deanne Weir and Olivia Humphrey. They previously teamed up for the SXSW competition title “Seriously Red,” starring Boylan and Byrne and which was directed by Otto.
In a statement, Kent said that Dollhouse and Storyd have a “commitment to female-driven storytelling and exploring the parameters of creative possibility [that] makes them a perfect production team for this novel.”
“ ‘Devotion’ is a love story for the ages, a burgeoning classic about desire, connection and our need to belong. The characters in the pages of Hannah’s beautifully-crafted novel and their screen potential have lingered with us all for so long. It’s a thrill to have a wonderfully ambitious production and creative team involved,” said Carrera.
“We both fell in love with ‘Devotion’ the minute we read it, and we believe it will make a magnificent feature film. Hannah is a magical writer, and we have already seen the beauty of her screenwriting through our involvement in her much-anticipated screenplay ‘Run Rabbit Run.’ We are delighted to work with the Dollhouse team again following our partnership on ‘Seriously Red’,” said Weir and Humphrey.
Dollhouse Pictures’ development slate also includes the psychological thriller series “The Geography of Friendship,” jointly developed and produced with Aquarius Films for Lionsgate and Stan and based on Sally Piper’s best-selling novel of the same name. Its “Seriously Red” will open in theaters in Australia and New Zealand on Nov. 24, 2022, through Roadshow Films. Its North American opening is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023 through Gravitas Ventures.
Storyd’s current film projects include “How to Please a Woman,” “Seriously Red,” and “Run Rabbit Run.” The first book to be optioned by the Storyd team for screen adaptation was “The Silent Listener,” Lyn Yeowart’s debut novel.