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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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BBC Films announces Dustin Hoffman's Quartet

BBC Films, Finola Dwyer and Stewart Mackinnon today announced Quartet, a comedy to be directed by multiple-Academy Award winner Dustin Hoffman. Academy Award-winning writer Ronald Harwood (The Diving Bell And The Butterfly, The Pianist) penned the script.

Quartet is being produced by Stewart Mackinnon for Headline Pictures and Finola Dwyer at Finola Dwyer Productions. BBC Films has developed the project and will co-finance it, while London's HanWay Films is handling sales for the film in Cannes.

BBC Films previously worked with Dwyer and HanWay on 2009's acclaimed hit An Education. Jamie Laurenson is executive producing for the BBC.

The producers are in talks with two-time Academy Award winner Maggie Smith, five-time Academy nominee Albert Finney and two-time Academy nominee Tom Courtenay to star.

The comedy follows events culminating in the one-off reunion concert of a once world-famous foursome of opera singers. The film is slated to shoot later this year on location in the UK.

Finola Dwyer said: "Ronnie Harwood's very funny and life-affirming script, the stellar cast and Dustin Hoffman directing is an irresistible combination."

Stewart Mackinnon, CEO of Headline Pictures, said: "It's a story about friendship and love that will touch audiences of all ages, but it's just as much about Dustin and the extraordinary cast."

Christine Langan, Creative Director, BBC Films, said: "BBC Films is delighted that Ronnie Harwood's beautiful, funny and uplifting screenplay Quartet has found such an inspirational maestro in Dustin Hoffman."

Hanway CEO Tim Haslam said: "The Oscar-nominated An Education is a gem of a film, and I feel exactly the same way about Quartet."

Notes to Editors

Finola Dwyer is an Oscar-nominated producer whose credits include: BAFTA-winning Backbeat; Welcome To Woop Woop; The Lost Son, Me Without You; The Hamburg Cell; Stoned; and the Golden Globe, Emmy-nominated and BAFTA-winning Tsunami: The Aftermath. Finola's most recent production is An Education, nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Film, Adapted Screenplay and Best Actress and eight BAFTA nominations, winning Best Actress for Carey Mulligan. Films in development, with Amanda Posey, include A Long Way Down based on Nick Hornby's best-selling novel, adapted by Jack Thorne, an original Nick Hornby script and John Mathieson's directorial debut The Knowledge Of Angels.

Headline Pictures was set up by Stewart Mackinnon and Mark Shivas to produce high-quality television drama and feature films for the international market. The company's development slate includes an adaptation of the Philip K. Dick modern classic The Man In The High Castle for the BBC; Reykjavik, a feature film with Ridley Scott attached, based on the end of the Cold War, and official Peter Pan sequel Peter Pan In Scarlet, written for the screen by Oscar-nominee Jeffrey Caine.

BBC Films is the feature filmmaking arm of the BBC. It aims to make strong British films with range and ambition, bringing the best of British talent to audiences. BBC Films is firmly established at the forefront of British independent filmmaking, and co-produces around eight films a year, working in partnership with major international and UK distributors. Creative Director Christine Langan is responsible for the development and production slate. Jane Wright is Managing Director, responsible for running the business operations and marketing. Recent hits include Lone Scherfig's Academy Award-nominated and BAFTA award-winning An Education; Armando Iannucci's Academy Award and BAFTA award-nominated In the Loop; Jane Campion's Academy Award-nominated Bright Star; and Andrea Arnold's BAFTA award-winning Fish Tank. Forthcoming films include StreetDance, Britain's first-ever 3-D movie, which hits UK cinemas on 21 May 2010; Nigel Cole's Made In Dagenham, Rowan Joffe's feature debut Brighton Rock, and Ayub Khan Din's follow up to East Is East, West Is West, directed by Andy de Emmony.

HanWay Films' slate includes David Cronenberg's A Dangerous Method, starring Keira Knightley, Michael Fassbender, Viggo Mortensen and Vincent Cassel; James Gunn's Super, starring Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page and Liv Tyler; Takashi Miike's samurai epic Thirteen Assassins; Nigel Cole's Made In Dagenham, starring Golden Globe winner Sally Hawkins and Wuthering Heights by Andrea Arnold.


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