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Cannes: Noomi Rapace to Headline WestEnd Films Action Thriller ‘Close’

Variety logo Variety 5/15/2017 Robert Mitchell
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Noomi Rapace is set to star in action thriller “Close,” which WestEnd Films will introduce to worldwide buyers at the Cannes Film Market this week. The London-based international sales and feature film financing company has acquired worldwide sales rights to the film, which is written and directed by British filmmaker Vicky Jewson.

“Close” sees the BAFTA-nominated Swedish actress play a female bodyguard and counter-terrorist expert who is assigned the job of protecting a rich young heiress in Bangkok. More used to war zones, she is ill-prepared for a VIP babysitting job for a privileged kid who’s not keen on the arrangement either. But when a violent attempted kidnapping forces the pair to go on the run, accused of murder themselves, they must find a way to work together to hunt down the attackers and their corrupt employers.

In visualizing and developing the action, Jewson used the real-life insights and experiences of Jacquieline Davis, one of the world’s leading female bodyguards, whose clients have included J.K. Rowling and Liza Minnelli. Davis will serve as a consultant on the film.

“I am driven by telling the stories of strong, real female protagonists, and built the script after meeting Jacquie,” said Jewson. “She has had a fascinating career in a male-dominated profession and shared so many experiences with me. With her on board as a consultant, the action will be as realistic as possible.”

“Close” is produced by Jewson’s regular collaborator Rupert Whitaker, who also co-wrote the screenplay. Janette Day, Braden Aftergood, Sarah Radclyffe and Dennis Davidson serve as executive producers. The production team also includes casting director Priscilla John; cinematographer Malte Rosenfeld; and stunt coordinators Oliver Schneider and Glen Marks.

The film is scheduled to shoot on location in the Far East and the U.K. starting next month. It will come under WestEnd’s female-focused WeLove brand, which the company launched in June 2016 to develop and produce female-specific content and promote female talent.

Rapace is repped by CAA, Magnolia Entertainment and attorney Howard Fishman of Hirsch Wallerstein Hayum Matlof and Fishman.

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