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04 12 2012 - Media release

Top of the Lake and Two Mothers selected for the Sundance Film Festival

Palme d’Or and Academy Award®–winning writer/director Jane Campion’s new TV series Top of the Lake and the Australian/French co-production Two Mothers directed by Anne Fontaine have been selected to screen at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, widely regarded as the highest-profile film festival in the US.

Both Two Mothers and the full series of Top of the Lake will screen as part of the Premieres program which showcases some of the most highly anticipated dramatic films of the coming year by established directors.

Screen Australia’s Head of Marketing Kathleen Drumm said, “We are thrilled that Two Mothers and Top of the Lake will be showcased at Sundance. These are both high-profile international collaborations that feature some of our finest Australian talents.”

Two Mothers features a powerhouse cast including Naomi Watts, Robin Wright, Ben Mendelsohn, Xavier Samuel and James Frecheville. It is an erotic tale of misguided love based on a Doris Lessing novel, adapted for the screen by Oscar®-winner Christopher Hampton and is produced by Andrew Mason and Philippe Carcassonne.

Two Mothers is produced in association with Gaumont, Screen Australia, Screen NSW, France 2, Canal Plus and Hopscotch Features.

Troy Lum, executive producer of Two Mothers, said, “It’s an honour to be able to showcase Anne Fontaine’s wonderful film amongst the cream of international talent in such a prestigious forum. We couldn’t be happier to have Sundance as the home of our world premiere.”

Top of the Lake is co-written by Campion and Gerard Lee (Sweetie) and co-directed by Campion and rising Australian director Garth Davis.

The original 6 x 1-hour drama follows a detective investigating the disappearance of a 12-year-old pregnant girl who is the daughter of a local drug lord.

The six-part series stars Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men), Holly Hunter (The Piano), Peter Mullan (War Horse, Trainspotting) and David Wenham (The Lord of the Rings, Public Enemies), and is executive produced by Academy Award®–winning See-Saw Films’ Emile Sherman and Iain Canning (The King’s Speech, Shame) and produced by Philippa Campbell (No. 2). Top of the Lake is a powerful and haunting story set in New Zealand about our search for happiness in a paradise where honest work is hard to find. Top of the Lake is produced in association with Screen Australia, Screen NSW and Fulcrum Media Finance for BBC Two, UKTV and Sundance Channel with BBC Worldwide handling international sales.

In selecting Top of the Lake for the festival, Sundance has bestowed a rare accolade, marking the first time the Sundance Film Festival has included a scripted long-form series in their line-up.

“It’s such a thrill to be showing Top of the Lake, See-Saw Films’ first foray into television,” remarked executive producers Emile Sherman and Iain Canning. “It is testament to the pioneering spirit of the Sundance Film Festival that they have invited us as well as a demonstration of the fact that there is no longer a divide between film and television. We are incredibly proud to have worked with the brilliant Jane Campion on Top of the Lake and look forward to sharing her vision with audiences in Utah.”

Top of the Lake will be shown in Australia and New Zealand on UKTV in March 2013 and will be broadcast on BBC Two in the UK and Sundance Channel in the US.

The Sundance Film Festival will take place 17–27 January 2013.

Production Company
See-Saw Films Pty Ltd
Producer Philippa Campbell
Executive Producers Emile Sherman, Iain Canning, Jane Campion
Writers Jane Campion, Gerard Lee
Directors Jane Campion, Garth Davis
Cast Elisabeth Moss, Peter Mullan, David Wenham, Holly Hunter
Broadcasters BBC Two (UK), UKTV (Australia/New Zealand) and Sundance Channel (US)
Sales and Distribution BBC Worldwide
Synopsis A 12-year-old girl walks out chest deep into the freezing waters of an alpine lake. The girl is Tui Mitcham, daughter of the local drug lord, Matt Mitcham. She is discovered to be five months pregnant and won’t say who the father is. Then she disappears.

Production Companies Hopscotch Features, Ciné[email protected], Mon Voisin Productions, Gaumont, France 2 Cinéma
Produced by Andrew Mason, Philippe Carcassonne
Producers Michel Feller, Barbara Gibbs
Executive Producers Troy Lum, Sidonie Dumas, Naomi Watts
Co-producers Dominique Besnehard, Francis Boespflug
Writer Christopher Hampton
Director Anne Fontaine
Cast Naomi Watts, Robin Wright, Xavier Samuel, James Frecheville, Ben Mendelsohn, Sophie Lowe
International Sales Gaumont
Australian Distributor Hopscotch/eOne
Synopsis Nobel Prize for Literature winner Doris Lessing’s beautiful and heart-wrenching story of two lifelong friends who fall in love with each other’s teenage sons. Two Mothers is an erotic tale of misguided love and a celebration of the enduring nature of female friendship.

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