Paapa Essiedu and Stephen Dillane join Saoirse Ronan in The Outrun

Emmy Award-nominee Paapa Essiedu (I May Destroy You, Men) and International Emmy Award winner and BAFTA winner Stephen Dillane (John Adams) have joined Academy Award-nominee Saoirse Ronan in Nora Fingscheidt’s highly-anticipated feature adaptation of Amy Liptrot’s best-selling memoir The Outrun.

Protagonist Pictures has sold all international territories on the film, which is currently shooting on location in the Orkney Islands. Territories sold include STUDIOCANAL for the UK, France, Germany and Austria, Cineart for Benelux, and Filmcoopi and Cineworx for Switzerland. In a far-reaching deal, Sony Pictures’ Stage 6 Films has picked up all other international territories. Protagonist is co-representing North American rights with CAA Media Finance.

The Outrun was optioned by Sarah Brocklehurst’s Brock Media, who has developed and will produce the feature with Ronan, Jack Lowden and Dominic Norris of Arcade Pictures. Mogambo’s Ignacio Salazar-Simpson and Ricardo Marco also act as producers. They are joined by co-producers Jonas Weydemann and Jakob D. Weydemann of Weydemann Bros.

BBC Film and Screen Scotland are funding the production and supported the development of the project. FFA medienboard Berlin Brandenburg, MOIN Film Fund Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein Film and Medienstiftung NRW are also funding the film. Claudia Yusef is Executive Producer for BBC Film. Protagonist Pictures is arranging the financing, with Luane Gauer, Janina Vilsmaier, George Hamilton and James Pugh executive producing. Fingscheidt has written the adaptation in collaboration with Liptrot.

Saoirise Ronan at The OscarsImage courtesy of Brock Media.

Ronan stars as Rona, who fresh out of rehab, returns to the wild Orkney Islands after more than a decade away. As she reconnects with the dramatic landscape where she grew up, memories of her childhood merge with the more recent challenging events that have set her on the path to recovery.

“We are so pleased to have the incredibly talented Paapa and Stephen join this project,” said Brocklehurst and Norris in a joint statement. “With our pre-shoot underway, we’re one step closer to bringing this beloved and award-winning story to screens. To have the universal themes of redemption and rebirth so eloquently explored by such talented artists is a dream come true.”

“The fervour with which our international partners leapt at this project is a testament to the immense talent of Nora and Saoirse, and to the appetite for stories of resilience and hope in the global marketplace,” said Janina Vilsmaier, Head of Sales at Protagonist. “With our strong network of distribution partners in place, we’re even more excited to see this powerful project come to life.”

Liptrot’s memoir of the same name won the 2016 Wainwright Prize and the2017 PEN Ackerley Prize and was a Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller. The book was translated into 15 languages, selling over 110,000 copies in the UK alone and was added by publisher Canongate to its modern classics list, The Canons. Rebecca Watson of VHA negotiated the film deal for the book on behalf of James Macdonald Lockhart of Antony Harwood Ltd.