Behold, The Lady In The Van‘s official trailer. The film tells the true story of Mary Shepherd, an eccentric homeless woman who lived in her van and, after meeting playwright Alan Bennett in the 1970s, kept it parked in his driveway for 15 years. Over the years their relationship grew from one of grudging assistance to a deep friendship that changed both their lives. Bennett later wrote a memoir and stage play about the experience, and has penned the script for the film version. Maggie Smith stars as Shepherd, with Alex Jennings as Alan Bennett.
This is Smith’s third go-round as Shepherd. She received a Best Actress nomination at the 2000 Olivier Awards for originating the role in the stage play, and reprised it in a 2009 radio drama version. The film version has already received enormous acclaim following release in Britain, much of it heaped upon Smith, and it makes its way stateside for an Oscar-qualifying run in New York and Los Angeles starting December 4, with a wider release starting January 15.
Directed by Nicholas Hytner, it’s produced by Kevin Loader, Nicholas Hytner and Damian Jones.