Diane Kruger and Talia Ryder (Never Rarely Sometimes Always) will star in writer-director James Napier Robertson’s Joika, about American ballet dancer Joy Womack.
Ryder will play Womack, with Kruger playing her mentor Volkova, a former ballet dancer and the head of the Bolshoi’s training academy. Thomasin McKenzie was previously cast in the Womack role.
London-based sales agent Embankment has closed a raft of presales on the project; for Australia/New Zealand (The Reset Collective), Germany (Square One), Italy (Eagle), Spain (Vertice), Greece (Spentzos), Israel (United King), South Africa (Filmfinity) and Portugal (Nos Lusomundo)
Embankment is co-representing US rights with UTA Independent Film Group and will be selling the film at the Toronto International Film Festival virtual market.
Napier Robertson and Hern produce through Four Knights Films, with Anonymous Content’s Paul Green, Paula Munoz Vega and Laurie Ross.
The New Zealand-Polish co-production is scheduled to start shooting in Poland in early 2022.