EXCLUSIVE: Kino Lorber has acquired all North American distribution rights to Four Quartets, the film version of the Ralph Fiennes-starring stage adaptation of T.S. Eliot’s seminal poem.
Directed by Sophie Fiennes, the film will get its U.S. premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival later this week followed by a theatrical release this spring.
One of the giants of modern literature, the poet, playwright, critic, and editor T.S. Eliot is best known as one of the central figures of the Modernist movement in poetry. Consisting of four poems published over a six-year period – Burnt Norton, East Coker, The Dry Salvages, and Little Gidding, each titled after the landscape that inspired their writing – Four Quartets is widely considered Eliot’s masterpiece and the culminating achievement of his career as a poet, offering four interwoven meditations on the nature of time and the quest for spiritual enlightenment. Following the completion of Four Quartets, Eliot was awarded the 1948 Nobel Prize in Literature.
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In 2021, Oscar nominated actor Fiennes toured regional theaters throughout the UK in the one man stage production of Four Quartets. The cinematic adaptation was filmed shortly after the conclusion of the stage production and is directed and edited by filmmaker Sophie Fiennes (Grace Jones: Bloodlight And Bami).
The project is a co-production between The Bath Theatre Royal and Royal & Derngate, Northampton and Lone Star Productions, Amoeba Film and Lonely Dragon Films. Producers are Sophie Fiennes, Ralph Fiennes, Martin Rosenbaum, and Shani Hinton.
The deal for Four Quartets was negotiated by Richard Lorber, President and CEO of Kino Lorber. WestEnd Films, which is handling international sales, will be screening the film for buyers at the upcoming European Film Market.
“With this magnificent adaptation, Sophie Fiennes and Ralph Fiennes have transformed T.S. Eliot’s masterpiece into an utterly singular work of cinema that reaches an emotional depth unlike anything I’ve experienced just reading the poem. Four Quartets is like nothing I’ve seen on either stage or screen, with an astonishing and deeply felt performance by Ralph Fiennes at its center. It’s both an honor and a great joy to partner with Sophie once again and bring this daring and inspired film to North American audiences” said Richard Lorber.
“I have seen all of Ralph’s stage performances, but Four Quartets felt essential to document. Seeing it on stage left me with the sensation of having traveled far in space and time and experienced a huge world. As I left the theatre I looked back at the relatively small space where it had all happened, it seemed miraculous, impossible. In translating Four Quartets to the screen, a central aim was to retain the spatial re-inventions Ralph conjures through the poem’s own structural, tonal and narrative shifts. Kino Lorber were instrumental in making this film happen, and I am delighted to once again be working with Richard Lorber and his excellent team,” added director Sophie Fiennes.
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