Sam Steiner_DSF2914_Credit Peter Searle

Source: Screen International/Peter Searle

Sam Steiner

HanWay Films has boarded sales on Justin Kurzel’s upcoming feature Morning, which it is launching to buyers at next month’s online European Film Market (EFM, February 10-17). 

HanWay is handling international sales, with CAA Media Finance and UTA Independent Film Group co-representing the US sale. 

Shooting dates are yet to be confirmed. The film will be set in a near future where a pill exists that removes the need to sleep. A woman who previously advocated for such living sees her world begin to crumble, as she and her son pick up the pieces from the death of her husband.

The film is written by 2021 Screen Star of Tomorrow Sam Steiner. As reported by Screen last year, Laura Dern and Noah Jupe are attached to star in the film, which will be produced by Benedict Cumberbatch and Adam Ackland’s SunnyMarch.

Dern plays the mother with Jupe as the son, and Cumberbatch in a supporting role as the husband.

SunnyMarch head of film Leah Clarke is producing alongside Ackland. Cumberbatch will executive produce alongside Dern and Jayme Lemons, through their company Jaywalker Pictures, and Marnie Podos.

Morning asks so many questions of us as people with ambitions, hopes, emotions and dreams, and it is fascinating to debate what sleep means to our very existence and our souls. What would we be like if we had never dreamt? It also contains the spirit of youth rebelling against the choices of their parents. Morning provokes, moves, entices…” said Gabrielle Stewart, HanWay managing director.

Morning is a joyful, reflective, and defiant story about a reality not so far from our own where a preoccupation with productivity has destroyed our ability to connect, grieve and love,” said Ackland.

Kurzel recently directed Cannes 2021 Competition title Nitram, for which Caleb Landry Jones won the best actor prize on the Croisette. Steiner is also working on horror Banquet to be directd by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia; and Fingernails, produced by Cate Blanchett.