Wednesday 03 Sep 2014
Salmon Fishing In The Yemen begins principal photography today and will shoot on location for nine weeks in London, Scotland and Morocco.
Financed by BBC Films, UK Film Council and Lionsgate UK, Lionsgate is handling the film's international sales.
Starring Ewan McGregor (The Ghost), Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada) and Kristin Scott Thomas (Nowhere Boy), Salmon Fishing In The Yemen will be directed by Lasse Hallström (Chocolat, The Cider House Rules) and produced by Paul Webster (Brighton Rock, Atonement). It has been adapted by Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionaire) from Paul Torday's critically acclaimed best-selling novel.
Romantic fable Salmon Fishing In The Yemen follows government scientist Dr Alfred Jones (McGregor), as a fly fishing-obsessed Sheikh (Amr Waked) tasks him with a seemingly impossible task – introducing salmon to the wadis of the Yemen. With the British government desperate for a good news story in the area, the Prime Minister's fearsome spokesperson, Patricia Maxwell (Kristin Scott Thomas), seizes on the idea and makes Fred responsible for the success of the project. Finally won over by the charismatic Sheikh, Fred also begins to fall for his representative Harriet (Emily Blunt). Casting off his deep-set cynicism, Fred rises to the Sheikh's eccentric challenge, to go on a journey of self discovery and late-blooming love.
Producer Paul Webster said: "I’m delighted we're bringing this much-loved story to the big screen. Paul Torday (book) and Simon Beaufoy (screenplay) are two of the finest comic writers in Britain today and Salmon Fishing In The Yemen will follow in the grand tradition of British comedies."
Salmon Fishing In The Yemen is produced by Paul Webster and co-produced by Nicky Kentish-Barnes. Director of photography is Terry Stacey (In Her Shoes); production design is by Michael Carlin (Last King of Scotland); costume design by Julian Day (Brighton Rock); and the editor is Lisa Gunning (Nowhere Boy). The film is executive produced by Jamie Laurenson (BBC Films), Zygi Kamasa (Lionsgate UK) and Guy Avshalom (Lionsgate UK).
Christine Langan, creative director, BBC Films comments: "Salmon Fishing is a unique and ambitious piece with an inspirational message for our times, and BBC Films is proud to be working with such an illustrious team."
Zygi Kamasa, CEO – Lionsgate UK concludes: "Partnering such acclaimed, multi-award winning talents as Paul Webster, Lasse Hallström and Simon Beaufoy, alongside the gifted actors on board, is such a fantastic opportunity for Lionsgate. We are thrilled to be involved with such an utterly charming and individual project."
About BBC Films: Established at the forefront of British independent filmmaking, BBC Films 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 StreetDance, Britain's first-ever 3-D movie, Lone Scherfig's Academy Award-nominated and Bafta-winning An Education; Armando Iannucci’s Academy Award and Bafta-nominated In The Loop; Jane Campion’s Academy Award-nominated Bright Star; and Andrea Arnold’s Bafta-winning FishTank.
Forthcoming films include Stephen Frears's Tamara Drewe, Nigel Cole's Made In Dagenham, Rowan Joffe's feature debut Brighton Rock, Debs Gardner-Paterson's Africa United, Ayub Khan Din's follow up to East Is East, West Is West, directed by Andy de Emmony, Lynne Ramsay's We Need To Talk About Kevin, and Ralph Fiennes's Coriolanus, a modern retelling of the Shakespeare classic.
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