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Sam Claflin on ‘Journey’s End’ and playing “damaged” characters

SCREENDAILY – For Sam Claflin, it was seeing Journey’s End on the stage that first ignited his passion to play the role of young First World War officer Captain Stanhope. The Suffolk-born actor was in his second year at London acting school Lamda when students in the graduating year presented the 1928 RC Sherriff play.

I just remember being completely spellbound,” says Claflin. “Being completely in awe, not only of the performances, but the story and the characters and the relationships and the world that was created. I remember sitting there in the audience thinking, ‘I have to do this play. I have to somehow find a way of doing this professionally.’”

That chance seemed to come when theatre director David Grindley, who had mounted a successful version of the play in 2004, sounded out Claflin about starring in a revival. “We sat in the Groucho, and I was basically swearing, very excited,” recalls the actor. “But we couldn’t. I was in the middle of doing The Hunger Games. There was an array of scheduling conflicts.”

Instead, the 2010 Screen International Star of Tomorrow became attached to a film version, adapted by Simon Reade and produced by Reade and Guy de Beaujeu — who had previously collaborated on the 2012 film version of Michael Morpurgo’s First World War novel Private Peaceful. After two years of rather tentative momentum, the film finally came together for a pre-Christmas shoot in 2016, with Saul Dibb, whose credits include The Duchess and Suite Francaise, in the director’s chair.

Sherriff’s play is set in an officer’s bunker beneath a British trench in northern France in the spring of 1918. The men of C-company, commanded by Stanhope, are in the front line, and braced for an imminent German attack. The battle-weary Stanhope hits the whisky bottle to get him through each night, and suffers shame and angry self-loathing when his degeneration is witnessed by teenage officer Raleigh (Asa Butterfield), a younger boy who idolised him at school and who is placed into the company for his very first posting. Reade in fact based his adaptation partly on Sherriff’s later novel version, which opens out the action beyond the dugout without sacrificing its claustrophobic essence.
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Categories Articles News Press Semper Fi

Sam Claflin To Star In Henry-Alex Rubin Crime Thriller ‘Semper Fi’

DEADLINE – Sam Claflin is set to star in upcoming crime thriller Semper Fi, directed by Murderball’s Henry-Alex Rubin. David Lancaster (Whiplash, Nightcrawler) of Rumble Films and Karina Miller (To the Bone) from Sparkhouse Media are producing, with Sparkhouse also financing.

Cornerstone Films is handling international sales rights for the title, and co-repping U.S. rights with CAA, which packaged and financed the film. Project will be launched to buyers at the Cannes Film Festival this month.

Claflin, who has starred in projects such as Me Before You, Their Finest and The Hunger Games, will play Hopper, a straight-laced cop who fills his downtime as a Sergeant in the Marine Corps Reservists alongside a close-knit team of life-long friends – Jaeger, Daddy and Snowball. A rowdy but inseparable bunch of guys, they look out for each other no matter what, including keeping an eye out for Hopper’s younger, reckless brother Oyster.

When Oyster accidentally kills a man in a bar-room brawl and tries to flee town, Hopper stops him and forces him to face the music, resulting in him ending up in prison. But, after being deployed to Iraq, Hopper feels wracked with guilt when he returns home and he and his friends hatch a plan to break Oyster out of jail.

I couldn’t be more excited about Semper Fi,” Miller said. “At its core, it’s about what it means to truly stand by the people you love. It’s thrilling and entertaining but also emotional.”

Claflin and Rubin are repped by CAA; Claflin is also repped by Independent Talent Group in the UK.

Categories Articles Press Their Finest

‘Their Finest’: Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy on the Humor & Humanity of Their WWII Film

Collider – From director Lone Scherfig and adapted from the novel Their Finest Hour and a Half by Lissa Evans, the romantic drama Their Finest is set in the midst of the devastating Second World War, when movies became a crucial outlet to raise the spirits of the nation during wartime. Catrin Col (Gemma Arterton) is employed to write female dialogue, referred to as “slop” by her male co-writers, for original British Ministry of Information propaganda feature films with fellow screenwriter Buckley (Sam Claflin), and as the two work together, they realize that there can be just as much passion behind the camera as there is on screen.

During this phone interview with Collider, co-stars Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy (who plays the self-absorbed but charismatic thespian, Ambrose Hilliard, whose days of being a romantic lead are well behind him) talked about what attracted them to Their Finest, the story’s feeling of nostalgia, learning to work on a typewriter, how dreamy it was to work with co-star Gemma Arterton, and why people love the collective experience of watching movies. Claflin also talked about My Cousin Rachel and the experience of working with Rachel Weisz, while Nighy talked about playing a very nice man in The Bookshop, opposite Emily Mortimer.

Collider: What was it about this script that made you want to be a part of telling this story and playing this character?

BILL NIGHY: To be honest, it was triggered by the prospect of working with (director) Lone Scherfig. That was my initial enthusiasm. And then, when I read the script, it was a wonderful script full of humor and humanity, which appealed to me. It was also something that I’m interested in. I’m interested in making movies and I’m interested in that period. People in the U.K. have a very specific nostalgia for that time, and I thought it beautifully expressed the details of how people’s lives were, during that time, and the general feeling, and how people can remain compassionate in truly dangerous times, rather than like compassion during strategically invented dangerous times. It’s a timely movie, in that respect. But, the script was very attractive.

SAM CLAFLIN: For me, personally, I’d been fortunate enough to work with Lone Scherfig, and she approached me with this script. After having such an incredible experience with her before, I knew that no matter what she gave me, I would happily jump aboard. Honestly, I fell in love with the script. I thought it was a really unique war story, set around a very poignant part of our history, but with an insight into a world that I wasn’t overly familiar with, with filmmaking at that time. I loved the beautifully poetic love story between Buckley and Catrin, and also the humor that Ambrose Hilliard brought. So, it ticked every box for me, really. And Gemma [Arterton] was already attached and I’d always wanted to work with her. It was a no-brainer.

This film has an almost fairy tale quality to it, while being set in the middle of a war, and it explores humor and tragedy in a very real, very relatable way. Was that clearly evident, when you read the script, or did that come out of fine turning during the shoot?

CLAFLIN: I thought it was all there, laid out in the text and the story, and even in the novel, which obviously came first. The world that was created and the rhythm and musicality that the script had felt almost like a musical. It felt quite uplifting and hopeful, and light and airy. It felt humorous and also quite nostalgic. It felt like a film of the time, and there’s something quite original about that. I think La La Land did it very similarly, in that it has that bounce in its step. As much as I don’t sing songs – Bill does – I felt really drawn to the musicality of it. You can’t ask for more, really.

Read more at the source

Categories Articles Nightingale Press

Sam Claflin to Star in Jennifer Kent’s ‘Babadook’ Follow-Up ‘Nightingale’

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – The thriller is moving forward with financing from Bron Creative and Bruna Papandrea’s Made Up Stories.

Nightingale, director Jennifer Kent’s follow-up to the cult sensation Babadook, is moving forward with both financing and a cast.

Nightingale is set in Tasmania in 1825, and follows a 21-year-old Irish convict who, after witnessing the brutal murder of her husband and baby by her soldier master, takes justice into her own hands, finding an Aboriginal male tracker to enter the wilderness with her to seek revenge.

The Fall’s Aisling Franciosi will star in the thriller, along with Hunger Games grad Sam Claflin.

Damon Herriman, Ewen Leslie and Harry Greenwood will also star, with Aboriginal Djuki Mala dancer Baykali Ganambarr and East Arnhem Land indigenous model Magnolia Maymuru rounding out the cast.

Bron Creative will produce and co-finance the thriller, with Bruna Papandrea’s Made Up Stories. Nightingale will mark the first production for Made Up Stories since Papandrea parted ways with Pacific Standard, a banner that she started with actress Reese Witherspoon.

Screen Australia, Screen Tasmania and the South Australian Film Corporation are also financing.

Babadook producer Kristina Ceyton will produce the new feature, along with Papandrea. Aaron L. Gilbert, Andy Pollack, Jason Cloth and Brenda Gilbert will executive produce for Bron, with Ben Browning and Alison Cohen executive producing for FilmNation and Steve Hutensky exec producing for Made Up Stories.

Nightingale has already been sold for Australia and New Zealand to Transmission Films. WME is handling US rights, with FilmNation handling international.

Categories Articles Film Festivals Press

“Their Finest” to Close Santa Barbara Film Festival

VARIETY – The Santa Barbara International Film Festival has announced the lineup for its upcoming 32nd edition, including its international gala event and opening and closing films.

Running from Feb. 1-11, the festival will open with the world premiere of the documentary “Charged,” and will close on a period note with Lone Scherfig’s comedy-drama “Their Finest,” which stars Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy.

This year’s festival will offer a wide array of films from over 50 countries, and will feature 51 world premieres and 64 US premieres, along with tributes to the year’s top talent, and panel discussions.

The festival will kick off the festival on Wednesday, Feb. 1, with a screening of “Charged,” a documentary directed by Phillip Baribeau, which chronicles the journey of chef and outdoorsman, Eduardo Garcia and his recovery after being electrocuted by 2,400 volts of electricity, miles from help in the Montana backcountry. Garcia had his hand amputated, lost ribs, muscle mass and nearly his life as a result of the incident.

The documentary is produced by Dennis Aig and Phillip Baribeau along with executive producers Teri Weinberg, Scott Ballew, Doug Ellin, Peter Hochfelder, Constance Schwartz-Morini and Michael Strahan.

Another of the festival’s segments will be an international gala, the centerpiece of which will be the French-Belgian drama “Heal the Living,” directed by Katell Quillévéré and starring Tahar Rahim, Emmanuelle Seigner, and Anne Dorval.

Their Finest,” a British comedy scheduled for a March 24 release, will close the festival. The movie is set in Britain in 1940 and stars Gemma Arterton as a scriptwriter working on propaganda films who realizes the government sponsored work could use a “woman’s touch.” Together with another writer Buckley (Claflin), the pair set out to make an epic feature film based on the Battle of Dunkirk, starring fading movie star Ambrose Hilliard (Bill Nighy).

The full festival lineup is listed on SBIFF.org.

Categories Articles Film Festivals News Press Their Finest

‘Their Finest’ Closing Santa Barbera Fest, Set for March Release

DEADLINE – The Santa Barbara Film Festival and EuropaCorp said today that the 32nd annual festival will close with the Lone Scherfig’s comedy drama Their Finest at the Arlington Theatre on Saturday, February 11 in advance of the film’s March 24 stateside release. The Santa Barbara Film Festival runs February 1-11.

Their Finest is written by Gaby Chiappe, based on the novel by Lissa Evans, and stars Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin, Bill Nighy, Jack Huston and Richard E. Grant. Pic follows a female scriptwriter (Arterton) hired by the British ministry to change the female dialogue in the country’s propaganda films during World War II. Her work is soon recognized by a charming lead scriptwriter (Claflin) who teams with her to make an epic feature about the Battle of Dunkirk starring a has-been movie star Ambrose Hilliard (Nighy).

SBIFF executive director Roger Durling said in a statement, “Lone’s deeply touching film is authentic, funny and depicts the power that cinema has to bring people together and share their stories. It was the perfect choice to close this year’s festival.”

Their Finest
is produced by Stephen Woolley, Amanda Posey, Finola Dwyer and Elizabeth Karlsen. Christine Langan, Ed Wethered, Robert Norris, Ivan Dunleavy, Peter Watson, Zygi Kamasa and Thorsten Schumacher serve as EPs. Pic is produced by Number 9 Films and Wildgaze Films.

Their Finest premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and also played the London Film Festival. EuropaCorp bought it out of TIFF with a seven-figure P&A commitment.

Categories Articles News Press

Sam Claflin to Receive Spotlight Award at 2016 Savannah Film Festival

PRNEWSIWRE – The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) is pleased to announce honorees, guests and the complete film line-up for the 2016 Savannah Film Festival. Mahershala Ali will receive the Discovery Award, Sam Claflin and Molly Shannon will receive Spotlight Awards, and Miles Teller will receive the Vanguard Award. Held in downtown Savannah, the Festival runs from Saturday, Oct. 22 to Saturday, Oct. 29.

Sam Claflin will receive the Spotlight Award on Wednesday, Oct. 26. Claflin will participate in a Q&A following the screening of “Me Before You” with director Thea Sharrock and producer Alison Owen. Claflin’s credits include “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2,” “Friday,” “The Riot Club,” “Love, Rosie,” “The Quiet Ones,” “Snow White and the Huntsman,” “The Huntsman: Winter War,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” “Mary & Martha,” “White Heat,” “United,” “Pillars of the Earth,” “Any Human Heart,” and “The Lost Future.” He has just finished filming “My Cousin Rachel”‘ alongside Rachel Weisz and Holliday Grainger and in 2017 will star in Lone Scherfig’s “Their Finest” alongside Gemma Arterton and Bill Nighy.

Categories Articles Interviews Me Before You Photos Photoshoots Press

Emilia Clarke framed Sam Claflin for stealing her Daenerys doll, filled his socks with fish on ‘Me Before You’ set

USA TODAY – Call her the Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, and undisputed Queen of Pranks.

Yes, Game of Thrones’ Emilia Clarke is a notoriously crafty prankster, according to her Me Before You co-star Sam Claflin. Filming the tearful romance last year, her most memorable hijinks included a remote-controlled fart machine, which she would casually unleash on unsuspecting cast and crew. She also framed Claflin for “stealing” her Daenerys doll, by planting it in his bag and plastering the U.K. set with mock-up “wanted” posters.

But as a self-described clean freak, the British actor says the worst prank may have been when Clarke put fish in his socks. Claflin tells USA TODAY:

They were brand new socks. I had worn them for only three minutes in the morning — like, literally to get from my house to work. I took them off to get into my costume and they stayed in my trailer until the very end of the day. … I don’t really like fish. It’s not my favorite smell or anybody’s. I just remember as I picked up my socks, I was like, ‘That feels odd.’ So I pulled them apart and went to put one (foot) in, and I fully gagged. I was like, ‘What?’

Afterward, “he made me feel so bad, oh, my God,” Clarke says. “But then I bought him three pairs of really nice socks.”

But she didn’t get off that easy: Claflin also had his share of fun at Clarke’s expense.

I stole all her furniture, which was pretty epic,” Claflin remembers. “I stuck it all in my room, but then my room was way too overcrowded. I couldn’t move!

It’s safe to say, these two must have April Fool’s Day on lock.

Categories Articles Interviews Me Before You Photos Photoshoots Press

Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin grapple with love, life in ‘Me Before You’

USA TODAY – NEW YORK — To fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones, Emilia Clarke is Daenerys Targaryen, a shrewd, dragon-wielding conqueror and one of TV’s fiercest heroines.

So when Me Before You director Thea Sharrock suggested she play Louisa Clark — a spunky, idealistic young woman who takes a job caring for a wealthy, wheelchair-bound quadriplegic (Sam Claflin) — screenwriter Jojo Moyes was understandably puzzled.

I couldn’t see it,” says Moyes, who adapted her 2012 romantic novel for the big screen (in theaters Friday). “She was, for me, irrevocably linked to long, blond hair and dragons and looking very stern. But the moment you actually see her without the (Thrones) wig, she’s so warm and bubbly, and actually has the physical look of Louisa. It really took no time at all.”

Playing someone who shares her optimistic outlook and humor was part of the appeal to Clarke, who calls Louisa (nicknamed “Lou”) a “more innocent version” of herself.

Reading the book for the first time, “I was in love by page 3,” says Clarke, 29, teasing and laughing with her Me Before You co-star throughout an arduous day of interviews. “Lou felt like such a perfect extension of me. I just understood her, and it was that understanding that brought my excitement.”

Read the rest of the article/interview at the source

Categories Articles Interviews Me Before You Photos Photoshoots Press

‘Me Before You’ stars on pranks, ‘Thrones’ spoilers

USA TODAYLove hurts — and not just emotionally. Clarke fractured her hip midway through the shoot. That made the film’s tear-jerking climax even more difficult, as Lou dances on the beach before Will makes a startling confession. “It was super-hard anyway, from an acting point of view, because it was the most raw that we get. Then I was in so much pain,” Clarke says. Even sitting on Claflin’s lap was an almost-Olympian feat. “They had to build a little obstacle course for me,” she says. “They got all these boxes and tried to move them so I could look like I was getting on” his chair.

One wacky wardrobe. One of Lou’s defining traits is her outrageous fashion, which Will lovingly describes as that of a “leprechaun drag queen.” Of the heart-printed blouses, butterfly hairpieces and bumblebee tights, Clarke says her least-favorite items were a striped sweater and linen trousers, which Lou wears when she grudgingly watches a movie with Will. “We’ve had a fight, so I’m kind of like, ‘Whatever, dude, I’m going to wear the most normal stuff I can find,’ ” Clarke says. “Obviously, I look mental, still.” As for what she kept: “I’ve got the tights!”

“Sam stole my doll!” Clarke pulled all kinds of pranks on Claflin, including putting fish in his socks. But the most elaborate may have been when she “framed” him for stealing a doll of her Game of Thrones character, Daenerys. “I was like, ‘What? I’ve never seen your doll,’ ” Claflin says. “She put it in my bag (when) I got in the car to go home. The next morning, there were posters all over saying, ‘Wanted: Doll Thief,’ with my image.”

She had Snow idea. Like the rest of us, Claflin is a “huge” Game of Thrones fan. “I basically kept asking, ‘Want to give me some spoilers?‘ ” he says. The actor was particularly curious about the fate of Jon Snow (Kit Harington), although the Mother of Dragons says even she was in the dark: “Kit hadn’t fessed up to me yet.”