EXCLUSIVE: Transformers’ star Isabel Lucas, I Love Dick’s Bobbi Salvor Menuez, Harrow’s Hunter Page-Lochard and Picnic at Hanging Rock’s Lily Sullivan are to star in Daniel Askill’s debut feature film.
Principal photography has started in the remote Cape Tribulation rainforest of North Queensland, Australia on the untitled psychological thriller.
Askill makes his feature film debut following a slew of hit music videos including Sia’s Chandelier and Elastic Heart and Leonard Cohen’s Happens to the Heart, which starred Salvor Menuez. He also recently worked with Michael Fassbender, Benicio del Toro and Charlize Theron on The New York Times VR experience Take Flight and Nowness short film Universal Machine.
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The story follows six individuals who receive an alluring invitation for a summer retreat from an enigmatic host but find themselves trapped by a mysterious force in a surreal psychological test. It is semi-scripted; the actors are working to a structured framework for improvisation rather than a traditional screenplay.
Priscilla Doueihy (Babyteeth), Kirin J Kallahan (Top of the Lake) and Trevor Jamieson (Cleverman) round out the cast.
The film is produced by See Pictures and Collider with Jamie Hilton and Isabel Stanfield producing for See Pictures and Rachel Ford Davies and Olivia Hantken for Sydney-based Collider, which was co-founded by Askill. Lucas and Askill will executive produce alongside his co-writers Lucy Bidwell and Gregory Stern for Collider Studios NYC, Will Alexander for Heckler, who are providing post-production services; and Sonia Borella at See Pictures.
Askill said, “It’s both wonderful and surreal to be finally starting my first feature film, and I couldn’t be happier to be doing it here in Australia, with my brothers Lorin and Jordan, a few of my closest friends as co-writers, Lucy and Greg, See Pictures and my Collider family. I am particularly excited to work with the amazing cast who have gravitated towards this project and are trusting a very non-traditional process.”
Lucas said, “I was immediately drawn to this project, the process, and Daniel’s amazing body of work. It’s also wonderful to work with producer Jamie Hilton again, it’s been more than a decade since we made The Waiting City in India.”
Hilton added, “We are huge fans Daniel’s iconic work and being part of his first long form project is beyond exciting for See Pictures and our financial and creative collaborators. This film is also an art project, and spending December filmmaking in the old growth Daintree rainforest is a wonderful opportunity for all involved.”
Hilton’s Ticket to Ride Distribution will handle worldwide sales for the film. Askill is repped by Anonymous Content and CAA and Sullivan is repped by ICM Partners and RGM Artists.
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