EXCLUSIVE: Rising Brit actress Bel Powley will star in Fritz Bohm’s Wildling alongside Liv Tyler, who also co-produces with Trudie Styler’s Maven Pictures. Styler produces alongside her Maven partners Celine Rattray (The Kids Are All Right) and Charlotte Ubben.
Wildling is an elevated horror tale in the vein of vampire pic Let The Right One In. The story centers on young Anna (Powley), who spends her entire childhood in a single room under the care of a mysterious man (Brad Dourif) she only knows as “Daddy.” He makes her fear the “Outside” by telling her of the “Wildling,” a creature with sharp teeth and claws who roams about eating little children.
At age 16, Anna is freed by small-town sheriff Ellen Champney (Tyler) with whom she finds a temporary home. For the first time in her life, Anna experiences the Outside, soon learning there’s no such thing as the Wildling. But as she begins to flourish as a young woman, a series of unsettling events unfolds. James LeGros will portray the Wolf Man, an eccentric shaman who lives in the forest.
German director Bohm makes his feature debut, having graduated from HFF (University of Television & Film Munich) with the award-winning short Moonman. Bohm also co-wrote the screenplay along with Florian Eder and David C. Palmer. Wildling is currently in pre-production and is set to begin filming at the end of the month.
Powley has quickly established herself as one of the most exciting young actresses working today. A star-making lead turn in Marielle Heller’s Sundance hit The Diary Of A Teenage Girl was followed in quick succession by eye-catching performances in A Royal Night Out and Equals opposite Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult. The 23-year-old Brit has a number of other projects in the pipelines including Haifaa Mansour’s A Storm In The Stars, where she is set to star opposite Elle Fanning and Douglas Booth in the dramatization of the love affair between the poet Percy Shelley and 18-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft — which resulted in Mary writing Frankenstein. Powley would play Claire Clairmont, Shelley’s stepsister and lover of Lord Byron.
Styler also announced last week that she would be producing and directing the film adaptation of James St. James’ bestseller Freak Show with Bettle Midler, AnnaSophia Robb, Ian Nelson and Lorraine Toussaint on board. The book was nominated for the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Children’s/Young Adult and the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Men’s Debut Fiction. The Lambdas recognize the best in gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender books.
Maven, a transatlantic development, production and financing company with a focus on supporting female talent in front of and behind the camera, has Catherine Hardwicke’s Miss You Already and Andrea Arnold’s American Honey coming up.
Powley is repped by UTA, BWH Agency and Schachter/Brown, Tyler is with UTA and Untitled Entertainment, Dourif is with Innovative Artists, LeGros is managed by Industry Entertainment, and Bohm is managed by Lee Stobby Entertainment.