Jane Seymour’s abiding interest in dementia led to her landing the lead role in Ruby’s Choice, producer/director Michael Budd’s drama with comic overtones, which starts shooting in Brisbane later this month.
The British American actress who made her name in the 1970s as Bond girl Solitaire in Live and Let Die and in TV’s The Onedin Line, Our Mutual Friend and Battlestar Galactica, will play the title role, a loving grandmother who has dementia.
Coco Jack Gillies (Maya the Bee Movie: The Honey Games, Oddball, Mad Max: Fury Road) will portray her 16-year-old granddaughter Tash.
Jacqueline McKenzie is Ruby’s daughter Sharon with Stephen Hunter as her husband Doug.
Emerging Brisbane writer Paul Mahoney wrote the screenplay, pitched it to Budd and it immediately struck a chord as the filmmaker lost his grandmother to dementia.
Budd approached Seymour’s agent knowing it was a subject close to her heart: Seymour served as executive producer on Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me, director James Keach’s 2014 feature documentary which followed country music legend Glen Campbell’s farewell tour while dealing with the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.
Businessman and philanthropist Sir Owen Glenn through the Glenn Family Foundation is investing $2.5 million in the production.
Glenn, who has pledged to donate 50 per cent of the profits to dementia research, said: “Dementia is a growing problem which gets very little attention from the community at large. It is treated as an embarrassing ailment and sufferers are isolated from family and friends.”
Seymour, whose recent credits include Netflix’s The Kominsky Method, Tim Hill’s movie The War with Grandpa with Robert De Niro and Uma Thurman and Nicol Paone’s upcoming Dinner with Friends with Malin Akerman, Christine Taylor and Kat Dennings, will start filming in April.
Budd said: “I want to give Ruby an underlying strength that will be highlighted through the course of the film by her interactions with her family.
“It is a story of love and compassion and family bonds, of the power of the human spirit and how love transcends all barriers and challenges.”
This is the producer-director’s fourth feature. He made his debut in 2013 with Love of My Life followed by Life of the Party in 2017.
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