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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Ireland / UK

WestEnd Films unveils first-look picture of Irish-UK co-production Freud’s Last Session

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- Directed by Matthew Brown, the new film sees Anthony Hopkins and Matthew Goode starring as the legendary titular psychoanalyst and writer CS Lewis, respectively

WestEnd Films unveils first-look picture of Irish-UK co-production Freud’s Last Session
Anthony Hopkins and Matthew Goode in Freud’s Last Session (© WestEnd Films)

UK production outfit WestEnd Films has unveiled a first-look image of Anthony Hopkins and Matthew Goode starring in Freud’s Last Session, an Irish-UK co-production directed by Matthew Brown.

Before embarking on the making of this new feature, Brown helmed The Man Who Knew Infinity [+see also:
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(2015), starring Dev Patel as Srinivasa Ramanujan, a mathematician who, after growing up poor in Madras, earns admittance to Cambridge University during World War I, where he becomes a pioneer in mathematical theories with the guidance of professor G H Hardy (Jeremy Irons).

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Based on the play of the same name, Freud’s Last Session was penned by Mark St Germain (The God Committee) with revisions by Brown himself. Here, Hopkins stars as legendary psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, whilst Goode portrays writer and academic CS Lewis, prior to his Chronicles of Narnia fame.

The movie is set on the eve of World War II, when, at the end of his life, Freud invites the iconic author to debate the existence of God. Interweaving past, present and fantasy, the film explores Freud’s unique relationship with his daughter Anna and Lewis’s unconventional relationship with his best friend’s mother.

German actress Liv Lisa Fries (Babylon Berlin) plays Freud’s daughter. Further cast members announced so far include Jodi Balfour (For All Mankind), Stephen Campbell Moore (War of the Worlds), Jeremy Northam (The Crown) and Orla Brady (Star Trek: Picard, Into the Badlands).

The project reunites Brown with Academy Award-winning production designer Luciana Arrighi (Mrs. Harris Goes To Paris, Howards End). Other key crew members are DoP Ben Smithard (The Son [+see also:
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, Downton Abbey [+see also:
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, The Father [+see also:
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interview: Florian Zeller
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]
), costume designer Eimer Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh (The Banshees of Inisherin [+see also:
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Love & Friendship [+see also:
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), BAFTA Award-winning make-up artist Morna Ferguson (The Wonder [+see also:
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interview: Sebastián Lelio
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) and editor Paul Tothill (Atonement [+see also:
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).

Freud's Last Session is being produced by Alan Greisman, Hannah Leader, Rick Nicita, Robert Stillman and Meg Thomson. The Irish producers attached are Tristan Orpen Lynch and Aoife O’Sullivan, of Subotica Productions, the Dublin-based firm behind recent Irish pictures such as Frank Berry's Aisha [+see also:
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]
and Emer Reynolds' Joyride. Niamh Fagan is serving as the executive producer for Screen Ireland.

WestEnd Films and CAA Media Finance are in charge of the picture's world sales. Sony Pictures Classics has bought the rights for North America, the Middle East, Turkey, India, Eastern Europe (excluding the CIS countries), Asia (excluding China, South Korea and Japan), Latin America and worldwide airlines. Moreover, WestEnd has also struck deals across Australia via Sharmill Films, Scandinavia via Scanbox, Italy via Adler, the Benelux via Just Entertainment, Portugal via NOS, Israel via United King and Greece via Spentzos.

The project has received support from Screen Ireland and the UK Global Screen Fund. Moreover, further financing has been provided by Media Finance Capital, LipSync Productions, M.Y.R.A. Entertainment, and a pool of independent backers including 14 Sunset, Movieland Entertainment, the Solomon Directive, the Travelling Picture Show and Lipper/Daly Entertainment. Filming is currently in its final stages in Ireland.

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