Irish filmmaker Luke McManus’ ‘If We Dead Awaken’ will air on Channel 4 tonight at 11.40pm as part of its ‘Coming Up’ series.
This one-off TV drama, directed by McManus and written by James Phillips, was shot in London last February over four days. Channel 4 commissioned the drama as part of its talent development series, which sees a number of one-off dramas air on peak time slots to give a leg up to budding filmmakers. ‘If We Dead Awaken’ was one of seven shows chosen out of 400 by the UK broadcaster.
The film follows a repentant KGB officer who travels to London in search of the Bolshoi's prima ballerina who broke his heart 30 years earlier.
McManus recruited Irish director of photography Suzie Lavelle (Doctor Who) who was second unit DoP to Samuel Care (In Our Name) for the project, as well as a multinational cast, including Dubliner Stanley Townsend (Happy Go Lucky, The Shadow Line), Lithuanian actress Ingeborga Daipkunaite (Wallander, Mission Impossible), Bosnian Branko Djuric (No Man's Land, In The Land Of Blood And Honey), and Phoebe Fox (Black Mirror, Switch) from the UK.
Speaking of the drama, McManus says: “It's a rich complex story about dark secrets, obsession and the impossibility of escaping your past. Directing actors
from five countries with a script in two languages was a bit of a challenge, but it was great to work with a script with such a broad canvas and the cast were terrific.”
Talking about the whittling down process for Channel 4, he continued: “I had applied along with about 400 hopefuls and then got the news that I'd been selected for a three day directors workshop in London. They had shortlisted 14 directors and were going to pick seven of us, so it was a bit of a director's ‘X Factor’ situation, but thankfully I got through.”
‘If We Dead Awaken’ will air on Channel 4 tonight, (Monday August 14) at 11.40pm.