The force has awakened in Daisy Ridley — just not that force.
The Star Wars actress leads the upcoming thriller The Marsh King's Daughter — the trailer for which EW is exclusively debuting, below. In the movie, Ridley portrays Helena, a woman living a seemingly ordinary life with her husband and daughter, but hiding a dark secret. Helena's father is the infamous "Marsh King," the man who kept her and her mother captive in the wilderness for years. When Helena's father escapes from prison, Ridley's character must find the strength to face her demons and the man she once idolized, knowing that her father will hunt both Helena and her family.
"The Marsh King's Daughter is an intense, psychological thriller," explains director Neil Burger (Limitless, Divergent). "What if the person you love the most turns out to be a monster? The story is about the past coming back to haunt the present. It's about families, where we come from, and asks, are we stuck with our legacy or can we change, can we free ourselves?"
Burger shot The Marsh King's Daughter, which is based on the bestselling book by Karen Dionne, in a remote Canadian forest. "I was looking to do a movie set in nature, and the wilderness is a big character in the movie," he says. The director describes the location as "beautiful and spectacular and very difficult. To get to our locations, we had to travel by boat across lakes and rivers, then hike for miles, bringing all our cast, crew, and equipment. All right in the middle of COVID. It was tough but worth it."
Philippe Bossé/Lionsgate Daisy Ridley in 'The Marsh King's Daughter'
Also worth it? Securing the services of Ridley as his lead actress.
"Daisy was perfect for the role," says the filmmaker. "She has a real mystery to her — a restraint perfect for a character keeping a secret, yet she's expressive in the subtlest way. Plus she's strong — she knows how to do the physical. Her scenes stalking her father in the marsh were exhilarating to film and later to watch."
Philippe Bossé/Lionsgate Ben Mendelsohn in 'The Marsh King's Daughter'
The cast of The Marsh King's Daughter also includes Ben Mendelsohn and Garrett Hedlund. The film hits theaters on Oct. 6.
Lionsgate 'The Marsh King's Daughter'