Chanya Button set for Vita and Virginia
by Naman Ramachandran
- Eva Green and Gemma Arterton to star, Protagonist Pictures to represent the project at the European Film Market
British director Chanya Button will direct Vita and Virginia. Based on Dame Eileen Atkins’ internationally acclaimed play that in turn is based on actual correspondence between the principals, the film will be an account of the passionate relationship between literary innovator Virginia Woolf and her lover Vita Sackville-West. In the roaring 1920s, Virginia, wife of Leonard Woolf, is at the apex of the literary world with the success of her novel Mrs Dalloway, but is prone to mood swings. She finds a fan in the vivacious Vita, who begins an epistolary courtship with Virginia while travelling in the Middle East. Upon her return the women consummate their relationship and Virginia goes on to write her masterpiece Orlando, where an androgynous hero inhabits multiple lifetimes as both a man and a woman.
Eva Green, recently seen in the title role of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, will star with Gemma Arterton, nominated for a 2016 BIFA for The Girl with All the Gifts [+see also:
film profile]. Evangelo Kioussis will produce for Mirror Productions (UK) alongside Katie Holly of Blinder Films (Ireland). Green, Arterton and Simon Baxter of Mirror will executive produce. Protagonist Pictures is handling international sales and will represent the film at the European Film Market in Berlin (more about their line-up here).
Button said, “We so often associate women of the past with oppression, bound by the duties of marriage, propriety and domesticity, but what Vita and Virginia offers is an example of a relationship where bold, brilliant women bent these institutions to their will at great personal cost.”
Button directed several shorts before making her feature debut with Burn Burn Burn [+see also:
film profile] that had its world premiere at the 2015 BFI London Film Festival and was nominated for Best Film. The film went on to win the Cinema City Festival Prize, the Golden Duke at Odessa and the Audience Award at Umbertide.