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Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan to star in Neil Jordan's vampire film Byzantium

05.16.2011by: Alex DiVincenzo

Gemma Arterton (below, CLASH OF THE TITANS) and Saoirse Ronan (right, THE LOVELY BONES) will star in BYZANTIUM. The picture is based on Moira Buffini's stage play A Vampire Story and will be directed by Neil Jordan (INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE).

The movie is about two mysterious women who claim to be vampire siblings. Shooting is scheduled to begin in Britain in mid-October with a budget of around $13 million. It's produced by Stephen Woolley and Elizabeth Karlsen's Number 9 Films, with whom Jordan has previously worked.

That's all that we know for the film so far, but here is the plot from the play. Be warned that there are some spoilers. No telling on how similar the movie counterpart will be.

Two young women arrive in a nameless British smalltown. Their names are not their own. They don’t declare their ages. Their relationship with each other is not clear. Are they sisters, as their assumed identities declare? Or are they mother and daughter? The eldest, Claire, takes a job in a pub. The youngest, Eleanor, goes to school.

During a truth exercise in her drama class, Eleanor confesses that she has been alive for over two hundred years and has survived by drinking human blood. Her classmates think she is utterly crazy and Mint, her teacher, puts her in touch with the school counselor. She makes one friend, Frank, a boy who has been home educated and is as much of an oddity as Eleanor. He tries to get to the bottom of her vampire delusion, thinking it an epic and compelling psychosis. Why would anyone want to be undead?

Frank’s parents believe that Ella is an anorexic – why does she never eat? Eleanor has started to write her life story as a play. She describes Claire’s background as a prostitute in 19th century London and her own as a child in a private orphanage. Meanwhile, things are falling apart. People are disappearing. Are Eleanor and Claire vampires? Or are they troubled young women on the run?

Extra Tidbit: Does the synopsis remind anyone else of LET THE RIGHT ONE IN?
Source: Variety



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