‘Relic’. (Photo: Ben King)
Natalie Erika James’ debut feature Relic, which made its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January, has been picked up by the UK’s Film Constellation for international sales.
Given the COVID-19 crisis, Film Constellation will shop the film, which stars Emily Mortimer, Robyn Nevin and Bella Heathcote, on a bespoke online platform – relicscreening.biz – available for select international distributors.
IFC Midnight is due to release Relic in North America in the last quarter of the year, while Umbrella Entertainment is handling the local release.
Produced by Anna McLeish and Sarah Shaw of the Melbourne-based Carver Films with Jake Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker of Nine Stories Productions, Relic follows Nevin as Edna, an elderly, widowed matriarch who goes missing. Her daughter Kay (Mortimer) and granddaughter Sam (Heathcote) travel to their remote family home to find her. Soon after her return, they start to discover a sinister presence haunting the house and taking control of Edna.
James co-wrote the script with Christian White (Clickbait), with the project supported by Screen Australia and Film Victoria. It was the second feature backed by Screen Australia’s Gender Matters program to enter production; the first being Ride Like A Girl.
AGBO Films’ Anthony Russo, Joe Russo, Mike Larocca, Todd Makurath, Wang Zhongjun, Wang Zhonglei and Hu Junyi executive produced.
The film received strong reviews out of Sundance, variously lauded as “emotionally devastating” and “haunting”.
Film Constellation CEO Fabien Westerhoff said: “We are thrilled to be working with such an exciting new talent as Natalie. As the world is going through unsettling times, the need for elevated entertainment has never been stronger. We’re excited to provide innovative ways to bring her film to our international clients.”