The hugely-anticipated follow-up to 2010’s The Arbor, is described by Barnard herself as ‘a re-telling of a fairy tale based on fact’. An adaptation of a children’s story by Oscar Wilde, it tells the dark tale of a pair of teenagers working for a local scrap merchant, who gradually get dragged into something far more sinister.
With backing from the BFI Film Fund and Film4, The Selfish Giant is brought to life by a stellar cast, including Sean Gilder of Shameless fame, along with Siobhan Finneran, whom many of you will recognise from Downton Abbey and ITV’s Benidorm. Conner Chapman and Shaun Thomas are the new kids on the block, making their debuts as the troubled schoolchildren.
Once again, Barnard has joined forces with producer Tracey O’Riordan and, if The Arbor was anything to go by, the pair will have another smash on their hands. The world of film has seen many great partnerships over the years – who knows how far this one will go? Whatever happens, it would take a brave soul to bet against Barnard adding to the armful of prizes she scooped for The Arbor, which included Best Screenplay at the British Independent Film Awards.
Filming itself took place in the writer/director’s hometown of Bradford, which means that The Selfish Giant joins such exalted company as The Railway Children and Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, both of which were also shot on location there. The city itself already enjoys a rich heritage where film is concerned. Aside from becoming the world’s first UNESCO City of Film back in 2009, it also holds the annual Bradford International Film Festival.
A release date has yet to be confirmed, but surely there could not be a more fitting way to mark The Selfish Giant’s premiere than to stage it at Bradford’s next bash in March.