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Paul Abbott writing 19th century drama and 'stonking' feature for Sony

EXCLUSIVE: Shameless creator developing Dickensian-style feature, Danny Boyle, David Yates interested; feature for Sony.

Shameless creator Paul Abbott is working across an increasingly busy slate of features, many of them to shoot in the US.

Speaking to Screen at MIPTV, Abbott said he has a loose agreement with Sony for a feature: “At the moment it’s called ‘A Film’ by Paul Abbott and I can deliver whenever I like. It’s going to be a stonking film.”

Abbott wouldn’t be drawn on plot details but with reference to Hit & Miss, his upcoming Sky Atlantic mini series (sold internationally by Fremantle) about a transsexual hitman starring Chloe Sevigny, he implied that it would have an edgy theme: “I was initially writing it for Laura Ziskin, so I now need to take my time writing it properly and then defend it to the hilt. You have to know where the main cake mix is before you move it around…a transsexual hitman is a bazooka tagline, for example, but you have to back it up. She has to be a convincing character.”

Asked if the feature would resemble Hit & Miss, Abbott said: “There have been a lot of questions about Hit & Miss as a movie.”

Abbott was more forthcoming about a Dickensian style drama he is working on: “I’m also writing a feature called The Storytellers. It’s set in Dickens’ time and is about a printers’ apprentice who is secretly writing serialized novels rumoured to be by the Queen.”

Directors including David Yates and Danny Boyle have shown interest in the project, even though it is at very early days.

Abbott envisages a US shoot: “I want it to be in the US. Not for commercial reasons. Boston could be a bigger world for it.”

AbbottVision would produce.

More on Paul Abbott at MIPTV here.

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