Set for release in UK and Irish cinemas on April 19, ‘RED JOAN’ is directed by Trevor Nunn and produced by David Parfitt. Starring Dame Judy Dench and Sophie Cookson, who both star as the titular character at different stages in her life, it follows the story of Joan Stanley, who in 2000 was exposed by MI5 as the KGBs longest-serving British spy.
The film has been made from an adapted screenplay by Lindsay Shapero, and based on Jennie Rooney’s best selling novel of the same name.
Joan Stanley was born in England, and is a Soviet and communist party sympathiser, who is employed as a civil servant in the British government, working at a top-secret nuclear research facility during WWII. She is recruited by the KGB, and from there successfully transfers secrets about nuclear bombs to the Soviet Union, ensuring they are able to develop atomic weapons at the same rate as the west. Stanley was able to remain undetected as a KGB agent for over 50 years. The film shows Stanley’s life at the time of her discovery, and also flashes back to her past, starting in 1938, where Joan is a physics student at Cambridge, who falls for young communist Leo Galich, and through him, starts to see the world in a different light. She realises that the world is on the brink of mutually assured destruction, and is confronted with the impossible question – “what price would you pay for peace?”. Joan’s choice is between betraying her country and loved ones, or saving them.
‘RED JOAN’ also stars Stephen Campbell Moore, as Max, a physic professor and Young Joan’s mentor, Tom Hughes, as Leo Galich, Ben Miles as Joan’s son Nick, a laywer, and Tereza Srbova, as a fellow Cambridge student, who serves as Young Joan’s confidante.
‘RED JOAN’ is a Trademark Films production in association with Cambridge Picture Company, The film is backed by Quickfire, Cofiloisirs and Twickenham Studios.Embankment Films is handling worldwide sales and Lionsgate will release the film in the UK.
‘RED JOAN’ is set for release in UK and Irish cinemas on April 19.