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Darren Thornton's 'Ten Dates with Mad Mary' Draws Berlin Buzz
22 Feb 2012 :
’Ten Dates with Mad Mary’, the debut feature film from ‘Love Is the Drug’ writer/director Darren Thornton, was launched at the recent Berlinale Co-Production Market and received the most meeting requests among the 28 international projects pitched for finance.

’Ten Dates with Mad Mary’ is a screen adaptation of Yasmine Akram’s stage production, which debuted at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2010 to widespread acclaim. Set in Drogheda, the story brings Thornton back to familiar terrain as his 2004 award winning TV drama ‘Love is the Drug’ was set in the same locale. "Best fighter in Drogheda" Mad Mary returns from a short spell in prison to take on bridesmaid duties at her best friend's wedding. Story follows her search for a date among "the geeks, freaks and misfits of small town Ireland".

Darren Thornton directed the stage production of ‘Mad Mary’ and has penned the screenplay for the romantic comedy along with his brother Colin Thornton. Speaking to IFTN the writer/director says the feature will be “similar to the stage play in many respects” but with some modifications made to the stage play’s narrative.

Set for production later this year, being the most sought after script at the Berlin Mart sees the prospect of a green light now look all the more promising. Ed Guiney (The Guard, Shadow Dancer) at Dublin’s Element Pictures is producing with development support from the Irish Film Board. “Element have really got on board with the project and so far it has received a great reaction,” says Darren.

Subject to finance, production is mooted for autumn 2012 and Louise Kiely (Parked, Milo, Saving the Titanic) is scouting for the film’s lead roles.

Darren Thornton’s 2008 short film ‘Frankie’ won Best Short Film prizes at the European Film Awards and Berlin Film Festival and ‘Two Hearts’, his 2011 Irish Film Board Signatures short produced to through his outfit Calipo Pictures, is successfully making its way through the festival circuit and was selected as the Cork Short Film Nominee for the European Film Awards in 2012.



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