AFM: Gerard Butler, Joe Alwyn Team for Psychological Thriller 'Keepers'

Gerard Butler-Getty-H 2016
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Protagonist is introducing the film about warring lighthouse keepers to buyers at AFM.

Gerard Butler is having a busy few weeks.

Fresh from joining Angel Has Fallen, the third in Millennium Films' action franchise, the actor is now heading to the seas of Scotland for Keepers alongside Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk breakout Joe Alwyn.

The psychological thriller, to be directed by award-winning Danish director Kristoffer Nyholm (The Killing, The Enfield Haunting, Taboo), will see Butler play one of a trio of lighthouse keepers pitted together on a remote island off the Scottish coast. Peter Mullan (Trainspotting) also will star in the film, inspired by a true unsolved local mystery and written by BAFTA-nominated screenwriter Celyn Jones and actor/writer Joe Bone.

Production Company Mad as Birds confirmed that the film is set for an early 2017 shoot in the U.K. Protagonist Pictures will introduce the project to buyers during AFM, which gets underway Wednesday in Santa Monica. The film will be fully financed by Cross Creek Pictures (Hacksaw Ridge, Black Mass, Black Swan, Rush, Everest).

Keepers will be produced by Andy Evans, Ade Shannon and Sean Marley for Mad as Birds, Butler and Alan Siegel for G-Base and Brian Oliver for Cross Creek. The project was brought into Cross Creek by Jason Seagraves, who will serve as executive producer. The film is cast and co-produced by Reg Poerscout-Edgerton.

“I feel incredibly fortunate to have Gerard Butler, Peter Mullan and Joe Alwyn leading the cast of Keepers — great actors who are deeply committed to this project, and who will go the distance," said Nyholm. "These men are the strong and unique characters at the heart of this story, which is a journey from innocence to animalistic survival. Keepers was great to read, will be an adventure to make and terrifying to watch!"

Co-writers Jones and Bone, who conceived the idea for Keepers while starring together in the biographical drama Castles in the Sky, added: “Our objective was to create a unique script that Kristoffer wanted to direct, great actors wanted to perform and a wide audience will want to see. We also wanted to say something poignant about trust and the frailty of the human condition. Keepers has all the shock and awe life can offer, wrapped up in a film that we hope will cling to its audience well after the last reel stops turning in the cinema.”

Protagonist is selling international rights for Keepers. CAA, which represents Butler, Alwyn and Nyholm, will co-represent North American rights. Butler is also repped by Alan Siegel Entertainment; Alywn by Independent Talent Group; and Nyholm by United Agents. Mullan is repped by Markham, Froggatt and Irwin. Celyn Jones is repped by APA, Thruline and Hamilton Hodell.