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IFC Films has picked up U.S. rights to Ophelia, the reimagining of Shakespeare’s Hamlet by Australian filmmaker Claire McCarthy and Covert Media.
Star Wars leading lady Daisy Ridley plays the protagonist. George MacKay co-stars as Hamlet, alongside Naomi Watts as Gertrude and Clive Owen as Claudius.
IFC Films plans a theatrical release later this year. The film, which had its world premiere at Sundance in 2018, was adapted for the screen by Semi Chellas, from Lisa Klein’s 2006 young adult novel Ophelia.
Set in the 14th century, but spoken in a contemporary voice, Ophelia puts the focus on the drama’s young female character as she is taken into Elsinore Castle under the wing of Queen Gertrude. Soon Ophelia captures the attention of Gertrude’s son, Prince Hamlet, and as she learns the ways of power, an undeniable love between the couple blossoms in secret. But when the murder of Hamlet’s father drives the Prince into a downward spiral of vengeance, Ophelia struggles to protect a dangerous secret amid gathering palace intrigue. She must ultimately decide between her true love and her own life.
Ophelia was produced by Daniel Bobker, Ehren Kruger, Sarah Curtis and Paul Hanson, while Elissa Friedman, Sasha Shapiro, Anton Lessine and Bert Marcus, who co-financed the picture, share executive producer credits.
The U.S. rights deal was negotiated by IFC Films executive vp acquisitions and productions Arianna Bocco, Linda Benjamin at Covert Media and CAA on behalf of the filmmakers.
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