EXCLUSIVE: Saoirse Ronan (Foe) has found her next project in Bad Apples, a biting satirical comedy with thriller elements, for which HanWay Films is launching worldwide sales at AFM. Marking the English language debut of Swedish writer-director Jonatan Etzler (One More Time), the film to be produced by Pulse Films is targeting a UK shoot — under an Equity contract — in spring 2024.
Written by Jess O’Kane, Bad Apples adapts Rasmus Lindgren’s debut novel De Oönskade. The film tells the story of Maria (Ronan), a primary school teacher doing her best to inspire a class of 10-year-olds but unable to because of one unruly and chaotic student. With her career in question and the child’s behavior spiraling, she makes a series of bad decisions that lead to her accidentally taking and locking this “bad apple” in her home. Maria tries desperately to backtrack, but when the class starts flourishing and the staff and parents are thrilled with the improvement, she finds herself in a very complicated predicament.
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Oskar Pimlott will produce for Pulse Films, producers of such decorated indies as Pig, American Honey, and Mogul Mowgli. Executive producers are Judy Counihan and Jamie Hall for Pulse Films, Philip Knatchbull, Marc Smit, Paul Wiegard and Kristian Brodie for CCM, and Paul Grindey and Charles Moore for Viewfinder Film. Fiona Weir (Ammonite, Room) is handling casting for the film, developed in partnership with the Curzon CM Development Fund, which is backed by Curzon (UK), Cinéart (Benelux) and Madman Entertainment (Australia).
Said Pulse Films’ Pimlott, “Jonatan has an unparalleled ability to create hilarious and horrifying cinema from the uncomfortable truths of human nature. We couldn’t be more excited that his unique perspective is going to collide with the extraordinary depth and talent of Saoirse Ronan in this special film.”
Added HanWay Films CEO Gabrielle Stewart, “We have been following with much excitement the development of this brilliant screenplay with one of the most interesting directors to be emerging from Scandinavia. This is such a juicy part for Saoirse Ronan who will bring to life all the drama, the comedy and the brutal tension of this unique role. Pulse are producers making cutting edge cinema and we are thrilled to be working with them.”
A four-time Academy Award nominee known for her work in films like Lady Bird and Little Women, Ronan can currently be seen starring opposite Paul Mescal and Aaron Pierre in Garth Davis’ sci-fi thriller Foe for Amazon MGM Studios, which debuted on Prime Video earlier this month after world premiering at the New York Film Festival. Other upcoming projects for the Irish actress include Steve McQueen’s Blitz for Apple and Nora Fingscheidt’s addiction drama The Outrun, based on Amy Liptrot’s bestselling memoir.
Swedish filmmaker Etzler’s first feature was One More Time, a dramedy somewhere between Groundhog Day and 13 Going on 30, which debuted on Netflix earlier this year.
Ronan is represented by CAA; Etzler by 42; and O’Kane by CAA.
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