Aidan Gillen and Sandrine Bonnaire join James Marsh’s Samuel Beckett film

Aidan Gillen, who played Littlefinger in ‘Game of Thrones,’ and Venice Best Actress winner Sandrine Bonnaire for ‘The Ceremony,’ joined Gabriel Byrne in the Samuel Beckett biopic ‘Dance First,’ directed by the Oscar winner James Marsh.

Film Constellation has closed pre-sales of the film in Australia/New Zealand (Icon), Italy (Bim Distribuzione), Spain (Filmin), Portugal (Nos Audiovisuais), Greece (Filmtrade), Hungary (Vertigo Media), ex-Yugoslavia ( Discovery) and Taiwan (Cai Chang). Pay-TV channel Sky developed the film as a Sky Original in the UK

Marsh, best known for ‘The Theory of Everything’, for which Eddie Redmayne won an Oscar, and Oscar-winning ‘Man on Wire’, will begin shooting the film on May 30 in Budapest.

The cast of “Dance First” also includes Fionn O’Shea, who will play the young Beckett. He appeared in ‘Handsome Devil’, ‘Dating Amber’ and ‘Normal People’, and will next be seen in ‘Masters of the Air’. The film is written by Neil Forsyth (“Guilt”, “Eric, Ernie & Me”).

Inspired by Beckett’s maxim “dance first, think later”, the film explores the many facets of the life of the literary giant: Parisian bon vivant, Resistance fighter in World War II, Nobel Prize-winning playwright, husband womanizer and recluse.

Marsh said: “Samuel Beckett had such a radical influence on modern culture, but despite all the adulation that came to him, he was acutely aware of his own failings. The film is a playful and often poignant exploration of the literary icon’s life, delving deep into the key relationships in Beckett’s life – primarily the two women he was close to.

“Dance First” is produced by Michael Livingstone and Tom Thostrup from 2LE Media, alongside Viktória Petrányi from Proton Cinema from Hungary, Umedia from Belgium and Fabien Westerhoff from Constellation Prods. as co-producers. Richard Mansell is executive producer.

Gillen’s credits include “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Peaky Blinders”. Bonnaire’s credits include Palme d’Or winner “Under Satan’s Sun” and Venice winner “Happening”; upcoming titles include “Limonov: The Ballad of Eddie” by Kirill Serebrennikov.

Film Constellation’s Cannes lineup includes Un Certain Regard titles “Harka” by Lotfy Nathan and “Joyland” by Saim Sadiq, as well as “Palm Trees and Power Lines” by Sundance winner Jamie Dack.

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