UPDATED with Dakota Fanning post: Dakota Fanning posted on Instagram on Wednesday to clarify the background of her character in Sweetness In the Belly, her latest film that is set to bow at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival (check out her post below). Deadline previously updated the headline of this story to clarify the nature of her role.
PREVIOUS EXCLUSIVE, 7:52 AM: “You are full of surprises,” Wunmi Mosaku’s (Lovecraft Country) character tells Dakota Fanning’s Lilly in the first clip of their Toronto Film Festival-bound drama Sweetness In the Belly, which itself has an intriguing premise.
Unspooling in the festival’s Discovery strand, Fanning stars as Lilly Abdal, who was orphaned in Africa as a child (of English parents) and escaped to the UK as a refugee, fleeing civil war in Ethiopia. In London, she embraces the Muslim immigrant community, attempting to reunite people with their scattered families. However, her mission isn’t purely selfless: a passionate lost love affair is revealed between her and an idealistic doctor.
Zee Mehari’s (Difret) feature, also starring Yahya Abdul Mateen – II, Kunal Nayyar and Peter Bankole, is based on the fiction novel by Camilla Gibb and is adapted for the screen by Laura Phillips (Combat Hospital). Director Mehari is Ethiopian and the actors speak a combination of English, Amharic and Arabic in the film.
Pic was developed by Sienna Films and is produced by Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny (How She Move) together with Alan Moloney (Brooklyn) and Susan Mullen (Brooklyn) of Parallel Films. Mehret Mandefro (Difret) and Adrian Sturges (The Enfield Haunting) are executive producers along with Laura Bickford (Traffic) and Fiona Druckenmiller (Beasts of No Nation).
HanWay Films is handling worldwide sales. Entertainment One will distribute in Canada. It was produced with the support of Telefilm Canada, Screen Ireland, the Ontario Media Development Corporation and Eurimages.
Fanning recently starred in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywoodand TV drama The Alienist.
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