EXCLUSIVE: IFC Films has picked up North American rights to Robert Connolly’s atmospheric mystery thriller The Dry, starring Eric Bana. A May 21 theatrical and on-demand release date is planned for the Made Up Stories feature. The pic is the actor’s first Australian film in over a decade.
As we told you at the start of the year, The Dry made a big splash at the Australian box office during the pandemic. Already it’s one of the top 15 grossing Australian films of all-time with over AU$17 million to date, garnering over $3.5 million in the best ever debut for an Australian-made feature from an independent studio.
Based on Jane Harper’s best-selling novel, which has sold over a million copies worldwide, The Dry is directed by Robert Connolly from an adaptation by Connolly and Harry Cripps.
Twenty years after leaving his drought-stricken hometown, Federal Agent Aaron Falk (Eric Bana) returns to attend the funeral of his childhood friend Luke, who allegedly murdered his wife and child before taking his own life. When Falk reluctantly agrees to stay in town and investigate the gruesome crime, he opens up an old wound – the decades-old, unsolved death of a teenage girl. Forced to confront the demons of his past and struggling to prove not only Luke’s innocence but his own, Falk finds himself pitted against the prejudice and pent-up rage of a terrified community.
Genevieve O’Reilly, Keir O’Donnell, John Polson, James Frecheville, Matt Nable, Bebe Bettencourt and Sam Corlett also star. The pic is produced by Bruna Papandrea, Steve Hutensky, and Jodi Matterson of Made Up Stories, alongside Connolly and Bana. Made Up Stories previously produced IFC Films’ critically-acclaimed The Nightingale.
Arianna Bocco, President of IFC Films, said, “We are thrilled to partner once again with Bruna, Steve and the amazing team at Made Up Stories to bring The Dry to North American audiences. Eric Bana is at his career best in this riveting true crime thriller and there is no doubt why The Dry has been one of the most successful independent films released in Australia. We can’t wait to kick off the summer season with this impressive film.”
“We’re absolutely delighted to be working with IFC on The Dry, such a renowned champion of cinema and the perfect home for us in North America” said Connolly, “We’re having such an amazing run with the film in Australia and we’re just thrilled to now be sharing this international detective mystery with audiences throughout the world.”
The deal for the film was negotiated by Bocco and IFC Films Director of Acquisitions Aijah Keith, with Endeavor Content acting on behalf of the filmmakers. Cornerstone is selling foreign.