4Way Pictures, the UK-based company co-run by Antonia Bird,Mark Cousins, Robert Carlyle and Irvine Welsh, has announced details of ahandful of new projects.
The company has now boarded A Western Story, an epicUS coming-of-age love story scripted by Naomi Wallace (Lawn Dogs). Birdwill direct the film, which will be a UK/US co-production.
Bird is also producing Faith, a joint venture betweenGeorge Faber's Company Pictures and 4Way Pictures, which is being financed byBBC Films and Yorkshire Screen.
Set during the bitter 1984-1985 miners' strike, it's thestory of a community ripped asunder. A striking miner and his young wife growever more politicised but in the process become estranged from other familymembers who don't support the strike. The director is David Thacker. Shootingis due to begin in the autumn. A sales agent is yet to be announced.
Bird's next project as director is likely to be Abraham'sDaughter, which is being made by Greenstreet's horror boutique Raw Nervefrom a script by Boaz Yakin and Edward Ricourt. It's envisaged that Greenstreetmay partner with 4Way Pictures on future projects.
Peter Edwards is on board as producer on Soul Crew,Irvine Welsh's directorial debut which comes billed as a high-energy, violentdrama set in the world of the 'football casuals.' Welsh Screen hasbacked the development of the film, which is set to shoot in Wales.
Bird and co are also partnering with John Sayles's company,Anarchists' Convention, on Sayles-scripted eighteenth century epic, JamieMcGillivray. Set in 1746, the film tells of a renegade Scottish clansman(likely to be played by Carlyle) who flees Butcher Cumberland's genocidalEnglish army in the wake of Bonnie Prince Charlie's defeat at Culloden.
Bird is also in line to direct The Meat Trade, withCousins producing and Carlyle heading up an ensemble cast. Bird and Cousinswill be representing the film at Mifed.
'We're avoiding the British trap of selling off allyour rights in order to make your film. If you do make a hit, that means youdon't get any benefit,' Bird told ScreenDaily.com.
Meanwhile, Channel 4 International has been handlinginternational sales on Antonia Bird's most recent feature, Hamburg Cell.Though already broadcast on British television, the film is now being circledby theatrical distributors following its well-received screening in Venice lastweek.