As refugees and immigration continue to be a flashpoint topic, a new drama will look at the subject from a personal angle. News arrives via Deadline that Saoirse Ronan (Atonement) is attached to star in Sweetness In The Belly.
Ethiopian director Zeresenay Berhane Mehari (Difret) will oversee the film, which has Laura Phillips (Nancy Drew) adapting Camilla Gibbs' bestseller. Ronan is on board to star as Lilly Abdal, a young woman whose life straddles two very different worlds. Orphaned in Africa as a child born to English parents, she returns to their homeland as a refugee, fleeing a violent civil war. Trying to find herself in a cold new home, Lily becomes the heart of a disenfranchised community and works to reunite people with their scattered families. But she is also dealing with a lost love affair with idealistic doctor Aziz.
"When we were developing the script Saoirse was our dream first choice for Lilly," producers Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny (New Waterford Girl) tell Deadline. "It's so wonderful to have her on board. We are thrilled to begin to realise the project, especially as the film is even more relevant now then it was when we started this journey."
The cameras will be rolling this September. Ronan, meanwhile, has several films awaiting release, including The Seagull, On Chesil Beach and Greta Gerwig's (Nights And Weekends) Lady Bird.