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Jeremy Irons & Sienna Miller Join ‘High Rise’
14 May 2014 : Deirdre Molumby
Jeremy Irons and Sienna Miller have joined Tom Hiddleson on ‘High Rise’, based on JG Ballard’s British thriller, directed by Ben Wheatley (‘Sightseers’, ‘Kill List’). The screenplay will be written by Wheatley’s regular collaborator, Amy Jump. It will be produced by Jeremy Thomas.

The film centres on a new, residential, luxurious tower block built on the eve of Thatcher’s rise to power. It contains an isolated community cut off from the rest of society. A young doctor called Robert Laing (Hiddleston) enters and is seduced by the high-rise and its creator, visionary architect Anthony Royal (Irons). Laing discovers a world of complex loyalties, and strikes up a relationship with Royal’s devoted aide Charlotte (Miller).

However, there is something else happening beneath the surface. Sensing tension amongst the tenants, Laing meets Wilder, a charismatic provocateur bent on brewing trouble. Wilder reveals the hidden life of the high-rise to Laing, who is shocked at what he sees. The residents break into violent tribes, and Laing soon finds a violence emerging in himself too.

‘High Rise’ will shoot in locations in Northern Ireland, including Belfast and a key location in Bangor, Co. Down. The production will receive funding from the Northern Ireland Screen Fund, supported by Invest NI and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund. Production is due to get underway in July.

Oscar winner Jeremy Irons, who will also shoot Zak Snyder’s ‘Batman vs Superman’ this year, is best known for his villainous roles in ‘The Lion King’ and ‘Die Hard: With a Vengeance’. The glamorous Sienna Miller’s previous roles include ‘Stardust’, ‘Casanova’, ‘Foxcatcher’, ‘Alfie’, ‘Factory Girl’ and TV movie ‘The Girl’.

Producer Thomas has said, “I’m excited to adapt another Ballard book, whose books are full of so many ideas, and to be working with Ben and Amy, Tom, Jeremy and Sienna, and working with Ben and the cast in a movie like this is why I love producing films.”

Wheatley stated, “I’ve been a fan of Sienna’s since seeing her heart-breaking role in ‘Factory Girl’. There’s a steely resilience in her performances, and I know she will be excellent in her central role in ‘High-Rise’.

“What can you say about Jeremy Irons? From ‘Dead Ringers’ to ‘Margin Call’, Jeremy has been creating indelible performances. He’s one of our finest actors and it’s very exciting to work with him.”

HanWay is shopping the project in Cannes, along with ‘Brooklyn’, starring Saoirse Ronan and Domnhall Gleeson and currently in production.

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