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Małgorzata Szumowska (Mug, Body) has finished shooting an Irish-Belgian thriller called The Other Lamb on location in Ireland. The protagonist of the story is a young woman called Selah, who was raised in a religious cult called The Flock. After she takes part in a rite-of-passage ceremony, her view of her congregation and its leader Shepherd’s teachings changes. Selah also starts to experience the sensual and sexual sides of life.

In 2017, the script, written by Catherine S McMullen, was placed on the so-called Black List, which is a repository of the best unrealised screenplays. “What also convinced me to make this film was the fact that it’s produced by people who worked on Whiplash and NightcrawlerDavid Lancaster and Stephanie Wilcox,” Szumowska tells Cineuropa. “I was also attracted by the very strong script and cast, including Raffey Cassidy, who showed huge potential in The Killing of a Sacred Deer. I feel more than prepared to make my first English-language movie, and I am very open to working on a genre film,” the Polish helmer adds.

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TrustNordisk has boarded international sales on The Other Lamb, the first English-language film from Silver Bear-winning director Małgorzata Szumowska (The Body, Mug).

UTA, which represents the director and the Interview lead cast, will handle North American rights.

The Other Lamb starts shooting in County Wicklow in Ireland on February 11 for five weeks with a cast led by former Screen Star of Tomorrow Raffey Cassidy (Vox Lux), Michiel Huisman (The Haunting Of Hill House) and Denise Gough (Colette). The film tells the nightmarish tale of a girl (Cassidy) born into a repressive cult known as the Flock, which is led by Shepherd (Huisman). She has an otherworldly experience and starts to question her own reality.

Australian screenwriter Catherine S McMullen wrote the script, which was selected for the 2017 Black List and the genre-specific BloodList.

David Lancaster and Stephanie Wilcox of Rumble Films (Whiplash, Nightcrawler) produce alongside Aoife O’Sullivan and Tristan Orpen Lynch of Subotica (Miss Julie), in association with Marie Gade Denessen of Zentropa (The Hunt), and in co-production with Umedia (Mandy). The film is backed by Screen Ireland and is an official Irish-Belgian co-production.

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The Lab will take place February 28 and March 1, 2019, during the 9th Annual Athena Film Festival.

Now in its third year, this two-day lab consists of intensive script development with seasoned mentors. It is designed for female writers who have not yet had a feature-length fictional script produced. Screenplays must include one or more strong female characters in leadership roles at the center of the story and must be feature-length narratives.

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‘The Other Lamb’, ‘The Homeless World Cup’ and ‘Pure Grit’ among recipients of production funding in Screen Ireland’s third quarter 2018.

‘Vivarium’ receives €50,000 additional funding with Fantastic Films for Lorcan Finnegan & Garret Shanley feature. ‘Wildfire’ Cathy Brady’s feature film currently shooting in Ireland, receives €85,000 in additional production funding; ‘Wildfire’ is produced by David Collins, Carlo Cresto-Dina and Charles Steel for Samson Films. ‘Wildfire’ previously received €550,000 + €100,000 (Female Funding) in Q1 of 2018, while ‘Vivarium’ was allocated €750,000 in Q2 2017.

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The long birth, death and resurrection of Australian SF and fantasy on screen is backed by ace writers and a great literary tradition.

Australian writers have been crucial to our national imagination for a long time, and are now joined by a generation of screenwriters who are trying to bend the landscape of production in a new direction. They are writing fantasy and science fiction and banging on doors both locally and in the US. 

Catherine S.McMullen, for instance, won the 2017 John Hinde Prize for Excellence in Science Fiction writing awarded by the Australian Writers’ Guild. Hinde was a beloved film reviewer and broadcaster who died in July 2006 at the age of 92. He started in the ABC as a war correspondent and stayed for over fifty years.  The bequest was nothing short of inspired. 

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This year’s The Black List, the annual rundown of Hollywood’s top screenplays that haven’t been produced, has been revealed this morning. Matthew Firpo and Ryan Firpo’s script Ruin received the most votes this year for their story of  a nameless ex-Nazi captain who must navigate the ruins of post-World War II Germany and atone for his crimes during the war by hunting down and killing the surviving members of his former SS death squad.

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