Anubis, a short story by Paul Murray, whose novel Skippy Dies was nominated for The Man Booker Prize in 2010, is a futuristic, space-set relationship comedy in which two travellers are distracted from their mission by beautiful women. The feature will see a directorial debut for Yann Demange, whose TV work includes Dead Set, Criminal Justice and the upcoming Top Boy.
Origin Pictures head of development Ed Rubin told Screen: “This is genuinely distinctive and appealing territory, with the feel of something like Sideways in space. We responded to the material instantly and we’re thrilled to be working with talent such as Jane and Yann.”
Origin is also developing a feature adaptation of playwright Polly Stenham’s Tusk Tusk, which the acclaimed young writer is adapting for the screen after its successful run at the Royal Court Theatre in March 2009. Tusk Tusk charts the interaction between three children left to fend for themselves in a London flat after their mother goes AWOL. A director is yet to be attached.
Origin chief executive DavidThompson said of the project: “Polly is one of the most startling and talented new voices in British writing and we are very excited to be working on this fantastic project with her and Film4.”
Origin is currently developing Michael Thomas’s adaptation of Daphne Du Maurier’s Jamaica Inn, which Justin Chadwick is attached to direct, and William Boyd’s adaptation of his novel Ordinary Thunderstorms with BBC Films. Thriller The Awakening is in post production, while Chadwick’s The First Grader is released in the UK this spring by Soda Pictures.