First Photo unveiled as Principal Photography Begins on Idris Elba’s Directorial Debut YARDIE adapted from Victor Headley’s cult novel
STUDIOCANAL announced today that principal photography has begun on the feature adaptation of Victor Headley’s cult novel YARDIE. Golden Globe and SAG winner Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom) will make his feature film directorial debut, with Aml Ameen (The Maze Runner, The Butler) starring in the lead role as ‘D’. YARDIE will shoot on location in London and Jamaica for seven weeks.
Additionally, Stephen Graham (the upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, This Is England, ‘Little Boy Blue’) will play the role of Rico, while Idris Elba will star as Piper. The film will introduce exciting new Jamaican talent including Shantol Jackson as Yvonne, Sheldon Shepherd as King Fox and Everaldo Creary as Jerry Dread.
Idris Elba commented “I am interested in making human stories with characters that are either, full of grace or flawed. In YARDIE the audience will see a film that hopefully means something to the people. I’m honoured to able to shoot it in my home town of London and as a guest in Jamaica.”
YARDIE follows the story of a young Jamaican named ‘D’ (Ameen) who, on arriving in early 1980s London, unexpectedly finds the young man who assassinated his revered brother back in Jamaica ten years before. His quest for justice explodes into a violent street war that could end up killing him and his loved ones.
YARDIE has been adapted for the screen by Brock Norman Brock (Bronson) and Martin Stellman (Babylon, Queen and Country). It is produced for Warp Films by Robin Gutch (’71, Hunger) and Gina Carter (Heartlands, Dead In A Week, Snow Cake).
YARDIE is financed by STUDIOCANAL, BFI, BBC Films and Screen Yorkshire. Universal Music are partners in the film and their Island Records label will be releasing the soundtrack. Executive producers are Dan MacRae and Danny Perkins for STUDIOCANAL, Mary Burke and Ben Roberts for BFI, Joe Oppenheimer for BBC Films, Hugo Heppell for Screen Yorkshire, Mark Herbert for Warp Films, and Idris Elba.
About AML AMEEN
Aml Ameen, best known in the UK for his role in the feature film cult favourite, Kidulthood, recently starred in the indie film, Dara Ju, nominated for the 2017 SXSW Grand Jury Award. Last year, Ameen appeared in Soy Nero, which was nominated for the Golden Bear in the 2016 Berlin International Film Festival. He will next be seen in the Bron Studios feature film, Parallel. Ameen is repped by UTA, Sanders Armstrong Caserta Management, Will Hollinshead at Independent in the UK, and attorney Dave Feldman.
STUDIOCANAL is Europe’s leader in production, right acquisition, distribution and international sales of feature films and TV series. STUDIOCANAL operates directly in all three major European markets, France, the United Kingdom and Germany, as well as in Australia and New Zealand. STUDIOCANAL has fully-financed recent box office hits like Paddington, Shaun the Sheep and Non-Stop. Upcoming films backed by STUDIOCANAL include The Commuter featuring Liam Neeson, and Nick Park's stop-motion movie Early Man, with Aardman Studios.
STUDIOCANAL is actively developing and distributing high-end TV series through its network of award-winning production companies including Tandem Productions in Germany (Crossing Lines, Spotless), the UK’s RED Production Company (Happy Valley) and BAMBÚ PRODUCCIONES (Grand Hotel, Velvet).
Additionally, STUDIOCANAL owns one of the most important film libraries in the world, with more than 5,000 international titles.
STUDIOCANAL’s parent company, CANAL+ Group, is fully-owned by Vivendi, a global media and content production and distribution group.
About WARP FILMS
Established in 2002, Warp Films is known for its multi-awarding winning films and television series, and is one of the most exciting and respected production companies in the UK today. In addition to their recent TV output, including The Last Panthers (Sky Atlantic/Canal +) and the multi BAFTA-winning series This is England '90 for Channel 4, Warp Films has been behind an array of prestigious British films and is committed to collaborating with and supporting top creative talent in the UK and abroad. From Shane Meadows’ award-winning debut Dead Man’s Shoes; to Chris Morris’ BAFTA-winning Four Lions; Richard Ayoade’s Submarine; and Yann Demange’s BAFTA-nominated ’71.
The BFI Film Fund supports first-class British filmmaking from talent and project development, through production, to audience development across exhibition, distribution and international sales. With over £50 million of National Lottery funding to invest each year, the BFI is the UK's largest public investor in film.
Films supported by the BFI include last year’s Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or winner and BAFTA-winning I, Daniel Blake directed by Ken Loach and the Jury Prize award-winning and BAFTA-nominated American Honey by filmmaker Andrea Arnold; Amma Asante’s A United Kingdom and Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire, the opening and closing galas respectively at the 2016 BFI London Film Festival; Viceroy’s House from Gurinder Chadha, which celebrated its World Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival; and Lady Macbeth directed by William Oldroyd, released on 28 April following its World Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and UK premiere at last year’s BFI London Film Festival.
Highly anticipated films backed by the BFI include Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here and Rungano Nyoni’s I Am Not a Witch, both premiering at this year’s Cannes Film Festival in Competition and Directors’ Fortnight respectively; Francis Lee’s God’s Own Country, winner of the Directing Award: World Cinema Dramatic at Sundance 2017 and screened in Panorama at Berlin; Andrew Haigh’s Lean on Pete; Clio Barnard’s Dark River; Andy Serkis’ Breathe; Sophie Fiennes’ Grace Jones - The Musical of My Life; Nick Park’s Early Man; Paddy Considine’s Journeyman; Lucy Cohen’s Fly Away; Michael Pearce’s Beast; Peter Mackie Burns’ Daphne; Thomas Clay’s Fanny Lye Delivr’d; Haifaa Al Mansour’s A Storm in the Stars and Mercedes Grower’s Brakes.
The BFI is the lead organisation for film in the UK with the ambition to create a flourishing film environment in which innovation, opportunity and creativity can thrive by:
· Connecting audiences to the widest choice of British and World cinema
· Preserving and restoring the most significant film collection in the world for today and future generations
· Championing emerging and world class film makers in the UK - investing in creative, distinctive and entertaining work
· Promoting British film and talent to the world
· Growing the next generation of film makers and audiences
About BBC FILMS
BBC Films is at the forefront of independent filmmaking in the UK, developing and co-producing around twelve films a year. In 2015 BBC Films was awarded the Michael Balcon BAFTA for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema. Joe Oppenheimer is Acting Head for BBC Films.
Recent and current releases include Lone Scherfig’s Their Finest starring Gemma Arterton and Sam Claflin, William Oldroyd’s Lady Macbeth starring rising star Florence Pugh, Sean Foley’s Mindhorn co-written by and starring Julian Barratt and Simon Farnaby, Gurinder Chadha’s Viceroy’s House starring Hugh Bonneville and Gillian Anderson and Steve Cantor’s Dancer.
Their latest award-winning and nominated films include Ken Loach’s I, Daniel Blake, which won the BAFTA Award for Outstanding British Film and was the winner of the 2016 Cannes Palme d’Or, Mick Jackson’s Denial, BAFTA Award nominee for Outstanding British Film and Florence Foster Jenkins starring Oscar and BAFTA Award nominee Meryl Streep and BAFTA Award nominee Hugh Grant.
Upcoming films include Hope Dickson Leach’s The Levelling coming to cinemas on 12th May, Stephen Frears’ Victoria and Abdul out via Universal Pictures in September and Andy Serkis’ directorial debut, Breathe starring Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy, with STX due to release the film later this year. Currently in production is Stan & Ollie starring Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly as the iconic comedy duo Laurel and Hardy.
BBC Films’ eclectic back catalogue includes Brooklyn, The Lady in the Van, Mr Holmes, Far from the Madding Crowd, Pride, Saving Mr. Banks, Philomena, Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, My Week with Marilyn, We Need To Talk About Kevin, Jane Eyre, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Made in Dagenham, An Education, In the Loop, Fish Tank, My Summer of Love, Truly Madly Deeply, and Billy Elliot.
About SCREEN YORKSHIRE
Screen Yorkshire champions the film, TV, games and digital industries in Yorkshire and the Humber. Its aim is to secure and support the very best projects, companies and individuals, helping to make Yorkshire and the Humber one of the most sought after destinations for production in the UK
Screen Yorkshire offers production financing through the Yorkshire Content Fund. Since it launched the YCF in February 2012 Screen Yorkshire has invested in 38 film & TV projects, including: National Treasure, Dad’s Army, Swallows and Amazons, Dark Angel, Journeyman, Dark River, Black Work, The Great Train Robbery, Peaky Blinders, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, Testament Of Youth, Hank Zipzer, X + Y, Death Comes to Pemberley and ’71.
In 2015, Screen Yorkshire launched Church Fenton Studios, which it is transforming into one of the foremost film & TV centres in the UK. Screen Yorkshire also works with Creative Skillset to develop regional and UK wide talent by designing and delivering industry schemes such as Bootcamp and Triangle. www.screenyorkshire.co.uk