The film had its world premiere at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival
Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired rights in North America and China to Wicked Little Letters from Studiocanal releasing theatrically in 2024. The film is directed by Thea Sharrock (Me Before You) from a screenplay by Jonny Sweet (Greed). Starring Academy Award winner Olivia Colman and Academy Award nominee Jessie Buckley, the film had its world premiere at the 2023 Toronto International Film Festival.
A 1920s English seaside town bears witness to a dark and absurd scandal in this riotous mystery comedy. Based on a stranger than fiction true story, Wicked Little Letters follows two neighbors: deeply conservative local Edith Swan (Colman) and rowdy Irish migrant Rose Gooding (Buckley). When Edith and fellow residents begin to receive wicked letters full of unintentionally hilarious profanities, foul-mouthed Rose is charged with the crime. The anonymous letters prompt a national uproar, and a trial ensues. However, as the town’s women – led by Police Officer Gladys Moss (Vasan) – begin to investigate the crime themselves, they suspect that something is amiss, and Rose may not be the culprit after all.
The cast is rounded out by BAFTA Film and Television nominee Anjana Vasan (We Are Lady Parts), BAFTA nominee Timothy Spall (Mr. Turner), BAFTA winner Joanna Scanlan (After Love), Hugh Skinner (Fleabag), BAFTA winner Malachi Kirby (Small Axe), Gemma Jones (the Bridget Jones trilogy), Lolly Adefope (Ghosts), Eileen Atkins (The Crown) and Alisha Weir (Matilda!.
The deal was negotiated between SPC and Studiocanal, who financed the film with Film4. Sony Pictures’ Stage 6 Films previously acquired additional international rights.
The film is produced by Blueprint Pictures (Emma, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) alongside South of The River Pictures (Landscapers) and Jo Wallett (Catherine Called Birdy, Emma). It is executive produced by Anna Marsh, Ron Halpern, and Joe Naftalin for Studiocanal and Daniel Battsek, Ollie Madden, and Farhana Bhula for Film4. In addition to writing the screenplay, Sweet also executive produced the film along with Simon Bird for Person Pictures.
Studiocanal’s Head of International Sales Chloe Marquet said, “We are thrilled to partner with SPC on Wicked Little Letters and closely following the fantastic reception in TIFF. We know that SPC is the ideal partner to bring this very special movie to audiences in North America next year.”
“Wicked Little Letters not only showcases great actors at the peak of their comedic form but also provides the kind of fun, rich entertainment audiences hunger for now more than ever. We’re happy to be working with Studiocanal on this film,” added Sony Pictures Classics.
This acquisition reunites Sony Pictures Classics with actors Colman and Spall, who have both starred in previous films released by the distributor. Colman’s performance in The Father (2020) earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress, while Spall won Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival for his titular role in the critically acclaimed Mr. Turner (2014).