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SYDNEY — Kate Winslet and Judy Davis have signed on to star in the latest feature from Australian writer-director Jocelyn Moorhouse, producers Film Art Media said Thursday.
The Dressmaker, billed as a stylish drama with comic undertones, centers on Tilly Dunnage (Winslet), who returns after many years in Europe to her small Australian outback hometown with revenge on her mind.
Tilly, a talented couturier, returns to the remote country town from which she fled as a child after being accused of murder. She wants to make amends with her eccentric mother, Molly (Davis), but first must unravel the secrets of her past.
Moorhouse describes the tale of love, revenge and 1950s haute couture as “Unforgiven with a sewing machine.”
“This is a project with rich, complex characters and an indelible Australian setting. Jocelyn is the perfect filmmaker to bring Rosalie Ham‘s book to screens throughout the world,” producer Sue Maslin said. “The incredible assembly of talent in front of and behind the camera is testimony to the ambition of everyone involved to make a great film. We look forward to working with Universal Pictures to bring this project to Australian audiences.”
Principal photography will start Down Under in 2014.
The Dressmaker is based on the novel of the same name by Ham, which Maslin optioned four years ago.
Working with Moorhouse will be Academy Award-winning costume designer Tim Chappel and crew including director of photography Don McAlpine, production designer Roger Ford and editor Jill Bilcock.
The Dressmaker has been financed with the assistance of Screen Australia, the Ingenious Senior Film Fund advised by Ingenious Media and Apollo Media, White Hot Productions, Film Victoria and Soundfirm.
The film will be released in Australia and New Zealand by Universal Pictures International and is being sold worldwide by U.K.-based sales agent Embankment Films and co-represented in the U.S. with CAA.
Winslet is represented by CAA and United Agents. Davis is represented by Shanahan Management.
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