Laurie Holden, star of US zombie drama The Walking Dead, is to executive produce London gang drama Honeytrap.
Inspired by true events, the film looks at gang culture from the perspective of a teenage girl and will be made by Bright Pictures and Fierce Productions. Shoot is planned for August.
Holden and Honeytrap producer Sarah Sulick of Bright Pictures studied together at UCLA.
“I am excited about this story,” said Holden, who plays Andrea in AMC’s The Walking Dead.
“Rarely do girls like Honeytrap’s Layla get a voice in contemporary film and television, except as the girlfriend or victim. But their viewpoint needs to be seen and heard so that we can understand the pressures they face and what drives them.”
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Holden will be making an extended visit to London in April and added: “I’m keen to promote the film and encourage involvement from a variety of sources.”
Sulick said: “Combined with the contributions we’re already receiving for the film both from the public pledging money through our crowdfunding campaign, and grants from foundations, we’re now in a position to drive forward with production.”
The production has raised nearly £20,000 ($28,000) through crowdfunding in just a few days through this online campaign.
Writer and director Rebecca Johnson of Fierce Productions was named one of Screen International’s ‘Stars of Tomorrow’ in 2009, and has been making films looking at aspects of life in Brixton for the last 10 years.
Her short film Top Girl screened at over 30 film festivals in 2009 including Berlin, Rotterdam, Clermont-Ferrand and Los Angeles, winning numerous awards and selling to Canal+ and other broadcasters.
In 2010, Rebecca was awarded development funding from the UK Film Council (now British Film Institute) to write the script for Honeytrap.
The story follows 15-year-old Layla, who is swept into a whirlwind romance with self-styled gang leader-rapper Troy – and then spat out the other side. Desperate to win Troy back, Layla offers to set up the boy who’s in love with her to be killed.
The DoP is David Raedeker, whose work on Sally El Hosaini’s debut My Brother the Devil won him the best cinematography award (world drama) at Sundance 2012.
Editor is Tracy Granger (Boys Don’t Cry) and casting director is Amanda Tabak (Kidulthood).