Mary and Martha with Hilary Swank Starts FilmingHilary Swank and Brenda Blethyn are now busy at work on HBO Films’ Mary and Martha, written by Richard Curtis (Bridget Jones’s Diary, Love Actually) and directed by Phillip Noyce (Salt). Filming is taking place in South Africa and North Carolina.
The cast also includes James Woods, Frank Grillo, Ian Redford and Stephanie Faracy.
Commenting on the film, writer Curtis stated, “I’ve always wanted to write a film about the fact that when you have children, there’s always the possibility of extreme joy and extreme sorrow. And over the years, working with Comic Relief, I have come across the tragedy of the startling number of lives taken by malaria every year. This film gives me a chance to write about that too, as well as working with a team of people I hugely admire – Brenda Blethyn, Hilary Swank and the great Australian director, Phillip Noyce.”
“We were especially attracted to Richard Curtis’ approach to the story – bringing a human touch to this serious and often overlooked issue about a disease that is preventable and can be eradicated,” said HBO Films President Len Amato. “In the hands of Philip Noyce, directing these two gifted actresses, the difficult subject matter becomes upliftingly accessible, yet profoundly powerful.”
Hilary Swank stars as Mary and Brenda Blethyn stars as Martha, an American and an Englishwoman who have little in common apart from the one thing they wish they hadn’t – both have lost sons to malaria. Promising adventure and fun, Mary took her young son, George, to Africa, where he subsequently contracted the disease, while Martha’s son, Ben, died while working as a volunteer at an orphanage in Mozambique. When the two immensely different women meet in Africa, they bond over their shared personal loss. Forging a deep friendship, they vow to dedicate themselves to the cause of malaria prevention, realizing that, as mothers, they have a responsibility to all the world’s children.
Source: HBO Films