Eva Husson’s latest has secured distribution. A press release announced that Sony Pictures Classics snagged all rights in North America, Latin America, India, Pan Asia (excluding Japan), the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Turkey, and airlines and ships worldwide to “Mothering Sunday.”
Penned by Emmy-nominated “Normal People” scribe Alice Birch and based on Graham Swift’s best-selling novel of the same name, “Mothering Sunday” takes place March 30, 1924, in Beechwood, England. “Jane Fairchild (Odessa Young), a maid in the Niven household, has the day off to celebrate Mothering Sunday while Mr. and Mrs. Niven (Colin Firth and Olivia Colman) attend a lunch to celebrate the engagement of their neighbor’s only remaining son, Paul (Josh O’Connor),” the film’s synopsis details. “Although Jane rejoices at her freedom on an unseasonably hot, beautiful spring day, she has no mother to go to — and for almost seven years she has, joyfully and without shame, been Paul’s lover. Like the Nivens, Paul belongs to England’s old money aristocracy, whereas Jane was orphaned at birth. With the house conveniently empty, they can finally meet in Paul’s bedroom for the first time. Today will be their last as lovers. It is also the day that will mark the beginning of Jane’s transformation.”
Colman won an Oscar for “The Favourite” and has received Emmy nominations for “The Crown,” “Fleabag,” and “The Night Manager.”
Young’s credits include “The Stand,” “Shirley,” and “Assassination Nation.”
Principal photography for “Mothering Sunday” kicked off in the UK this week. Lionsgate UK has acquired the UK distribution rights and is planning a theatrical release in 2021.
In a statement, Sony Pictures Classics said that Eva Husson’s “energy coupled with the dramatic conflict between romance and Britain’s class system as beautifully written in the screenplay by Alice Birch based on the provocative novel by Graham Swift promises to be an amazing movie.”
Husson’s last film, “Girls of the Sun,” made its world premiere at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. Based on a true story, the drama tells the story of female resistance fighters. She made her feature directorial debut with “Bang Gang (A Modern Love Story),” a racy teen sex drama.
The filmmaker told us that the worst advice she’s received is that she “should be careful about being so bossy.” Husson added, “Fuck that. As a woman director, you’re going against what’s expected from you as a woman anyway. During the shoot of my first feature I had a six-month infant with me, and believe me, the last thing on earth I needed to pay attention to was whether or not I was bossy. It was physically very hard to be on set, I had given birth not long before, I gave everything I could to the film, and the rest of my energy needed to go to my son. The more women filmmakers there will be, the less women will have to answer to ridiculous expectations,” she emphasized.
“Succession” and “Lady Macbeth” are among Birch’s other credits. She’ll follow up her “Normal People” success with another Sally Rooney adaptation for Hulu, “Conversations with Friends.” Birch also has a “Dead Ringers” TV reboot in the works at Amazon with Rachel Weisz.