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Farming Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje

Festival Predictions

2018 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s Farming

2018 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s Farming

It’s been a good decade since the project arrived in draft form at both Sundance Labs, so once it premieres we’ll be able to say that Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje took the road to perdition before taking the long road to fruition. The son of immigrants from Nigeria, the British born veteran actor (most recently seen in Suicide Squad) created a template short by the same name in 2004, before heading to the labs and then a hometown Sundance London 2012 reading gig before lensing this past August in the U.K. and Nigeria. Farming stars Akinnuoye-Agbaje alongside Kate Beckinsale, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Damson Idris. This could throw a punch and pack an emotional wallop.

Gist: During the 1960s and 1980s, tens of thousands of Nigerian children were farmed out to white working class families in the U.K. But as they were in private foster care, many of them were never registered with social services, making them invisible to the authorities. Many were never reunited with their birth parents. In the film, the lead character (Idris) is sent to the U.K. by his parents in hopes of achieving a better life. Instead, he becomes the feared leader of a white skinhead gang in 1980s England. When all seems lost and he spirals into self-destruction, a benevolent teacher (played by Mbatha-Raw) offers him one last chance at redemption. Beckinsale plays his foster mother.

Production Co./ProducersGroundswell Productions‘ Michael London, Janice Williams (Trumbo), Montebello Productions’ François Ivernel (Philomena), Andrew Levitas (Flower).

Prediction: Bonafide World Dramatic Comp section candidate.

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available. Endeavor Content & CAA (domestic). HanWay Films (international)

 

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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