Willem Dafoe to narrate documentary “River” by “Sherpa” Helmer Jennifer Peedom (EXCLUSIVE)
Produced by Stranger Than Fiction and Arrow Pictures, “River” is an exploration of the timeless relationship between humanity and rivers. Presented as an orchestral concert film, the doc is an ode to natural speech and a narrative of the history of rivers and human civilization. With a score composed by Richard Tognetti of the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Dafoe will tell a screenplay by award-winning author and Cambridge University fellow Robert Macfarlane (“Mountains of the Mind”, “Underland”). The film will also feature additional music by William Barton, Jonny Greenwood and Radiohead.
“I wanted to be aware of not throwing the words over the picture or illustrating the music, but mixing them up sonorously,” said Dafoe, who also told Peedom’s 2017 doc “Mountain”.
“Of course there is underlining, but I try to let the words open channels of thought and emotion, not control them or indicate an idea,” the actor added.
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“River” is written and directed by Peedom and co-written and co-directed by Joseph Nizeti, produced by Joanne McGowan and Peedom for Stranger Than Fiction and John Smithson for Arrow Pictures.
Commissioned by Australian broadcaster ABC and BBC Arts, “River” is a co-production with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Screen Australia. The picture will have its world premiere at the end of the summer, followed by a theatrical release at the end of 2021. Dogwoof will release the film in the UK while Madman will take the picture for Australia and New Zealand .
“River” spans six continents and draws on contemporary cinematography, including satellite filming, to show rivers on scales and from perspectives never seen before. The project builds on the huge success of Peedom’s previous film, “Mountain,” which is the highest-grossing Australian documentary in box office history, and ended an 11-week tour of UK cinemas and Americans.
Peedom and Arrow Pictures’ previous collaboration, “Sherpa” (2015), was nominated for a BAFTA and won the award for Best Documentary at the London Film Festival. He has also won the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards, the Australian Film Critics Association Awards and the Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards, among many other accolades.
“’River’ gives a bird’s eye view of humanity’s relationship with our most precious resource through time. It’s a story of how our shortsighted attempts to control nature have turned against us. We hope ‘River’ inspires the public to believe that encounters with nature can permanently change – for the better – the way we think about the environment and how our decisions impact the environment, ”he said. said Peedom.
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