Heather Ogilvie (Galvanized Film Group) has acquired the option to produce a feature film based on Tracy Chevalier’s novel Remarkable Creatures and will partner with Icon Film Distribution to bring it to the big screen. Academy Award nominee Jan Sardi (Shine, Mao’s Last Dancer, The Notebook) will adapt the book, which was published by HarperCollins Publishers in 2009.
Tracy Chevalier is the author of five previous novels, including the international bestseller Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Virgin Blue, Falling Angels, The Lady and the Unicorn and Burning Bright.
‘I’m thrilled Tracy has entrusted to us the exciting task of adapting her wonderful novel for the screen,’ Heather said. ‘Icon Films have endorsed our conviction that this book will result in an outstanding movie by partnering with us to accelerate its development. Jan Sardi is a gifted, sensitive scriptwriter, and we’re confident he’ll deliver a script that more than lives up to our expectations.’
Tracy comments, ‘I think a joint Australian/UK production is ingenious. Like my very English heroines, Australians have always had a strong emotional connection to landscape, which will serve the film well. Some of the most English of subjects have been beautifully filmed by outsiders: Ang Lee’s Sense and Sensibility, for instance, or Jane Campion’s Bright Star. I hope Remarkable Creatures joins such impressive company.’
Galvanized Film Group is a Sydney-based production company headed by Heather Ogilvie, producer and executive producer of five features, a drama series for Warner Bros and a movie-of-the-week for the US network CBS.
Icon Film Distribution, Australia’s leading independent film distributor, count among their many successes the acquisition of some of the most acclaimed independent films of recent years, including Crash, The Queen, Slumdog Millionaire, Once, A Single Man and Precious.
About the book:
Elizabeth Philpot spends her days on the windswept beaches of the English south coast in the unladylike pursuit of collecting fossils. It is here that she meets Mary Anning, an illiterate working-class girl with ‘the eye’ for finding fossils. When Mary uncovers an unusual fossilised skeleton she sets the religious fathers on edge, the townspeople to vicious gossip, and the scientific world alight. In an arena dominated by men, Mary and Elizabeth are barred from the academic community. Their relationship strikes a delicate balance between fierce loyalty, mutual appreciation and barely suppressed envy. Ultimately, in the struggle to be recognised in the wider world, Elizabeth and Mary discover that friendship is their greatest ally.