HanWay Films hasacquired international sales rights to two projects in pre-production: BecomingJane from Kinky Boots director Julian Jarrold starring AnneHathaway, and Away From Her, actress Sarah Polley's feature directorial debut starringVanessa Redgrave.
Becoming Jane stars Hathaway (Brokeback Mountain,The Princess Diaries) asyoung future novelist Jane Austen, who is embroiled in a passionate love affairat age 20. The film-makers are in talks with Julie Walters and other Britishstalwarts about supporting roles.
The $19.5million project, an Ecosse Films production with Blueprint Pictures, will startstarting in spring 2006. Graham Broadbent (Millions), Robert Bernstein (Charlotte Gray) and Douglas Rae (Mrs. Brown) are producing, with Michael Mendelsohn(Lord of War)executive producing. Kevin Hood and Sarah Williams wrote the screenplay.
HanWay CEO TimHaslam described the film as a "classic, feel-good date movie, a fun and'technicolour' romp, Shakespeare in Love meets Pride & Prejudice with a passionate and poignant romancetargeting a broad audience."
Away From Her delves into the lives of two people inthe final stages of a complex marriage. The $5 million project will shoot inearly 2006. Daniel Iron (The Saddest Music in the World) will produce with Jennifer Weiss (Luck) and Simone Urdl (Ararat). Victoria Hirst (Owning Mahowny) will co-produce and director AtomEgoyan (Exotica) willexecutive produce.
"AwayFrom Her is a beautifullove story about a couple in their 70s," said Polley, who has previouslydirected short films and acted in films including The Sweet Hereafter and Dawn of the Dead. "It will be told in a lyrical style,while remaining true to the complexity of a long marriage. I want to make afilm that explores memory, and the ephemeral role it plays in the history of arelationship, while at the same time celebrating a love that has survived overdecades, despite the scars that life leaves behind."