EXCLUSIVE: The Hour and Suffragette actress Romola Garai is to make her feature directorial debut on upcoming horror Outside, I can reveal. Carla Juri (Blade Runner 2049), Alec Secareanu (God’s Own Country) and Imelda Staunton (Vera Drake) will lead cast in the movie, which is scheduled to go into production this fall. AMP International is handling world sales and will introduce the project to buyers in Cannes. Deals have already closed in German speaking Europe (Ascot Elite), Latin America (Imagem) and The Middle East (Front Row).

The contained horror, which is also scripted by Garai, tells of a young male refugee traumatised by war who is brought to a dilapidated house in order to care for a woman and her dying mother. Falling in love with the younger woman he begins to suspect she is enslaved to a demon and resolves to fight the creature and rescue the woman he loves…but all is not what it seems.

Matthew James Wilkinson of Stigma Films, currently in pre-production on the Untitled Danny Boyle/Richard Curtis film for Working Title Films/Universal, is producing. Damian Jones (The Iron Lady) is executive producer as are James Norrie, Bob Portal and Inderpal Singh for AMP. Anna Kennedy was casting director.

Rising Swiss actress Juri, who most recently played Dr. Ana Stelline in Blade Runner 2049 and also stars in Peter Greenaway’s upcoming title Walking To Paris, got her breakout in 2013 German hit Wetlands. Romanian actor Secareanu was BIFA-nominated for his performance in UK breakout God’s Own Country. Oscar-nominated stage and screen veteran Staunton is well known for performances in Mike Leigh’s Vera Drake and her role as Aunt Lucy in Paddington and Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter franchise.

Garai, Golden Globe-nominated for her performances in BBC dramas Emma and The Hour, starred last year in supernatural adaptation The Miniaturist. She previously directed short Scrubber which was nominated for Best International Short Film at Sundance Film Festival 2013 and Best British Short Film at Edinburgh Festival 2013, and recently created futuristic ensemble drama The Divide, alongside Penelope Skinner. Kudos recently optioned the idea and commissioned the pilot.

AMP’s Norrie told us, “In Outside Romola has crafted a deliciously smart horror script that is as exquisitely terrifying as it is thought provoking. With the stellar cast she has assembled this film is going to leave audiences
reeling, and we are thrilled to be a part of it.”