Well under a year since Sightseers caravanned into our lives, there's already a new Ben Wheatley film almost upon us. Above is a new still from Wheatley's Civil War madfest A Field In England, in which Reece Shearsmith is either praying for deliverance, victory, his soul, or the deletion of The League Of Gentlemen's Apocalypse. And to go with the new image are the full details of how the film's UK release will play out. We have never seen its like before.
In short, A Field In England will be the first film ever to be released in UK nationwide cinemas, on free TV, on DVD/Blu-ray and on Video-On Demand on the same day. The unprecedented multi-platform alliance has been hatched between Film4, Picturehouse Entertainment, 4DVD and the Film4 Channel. That means you can choose to see it with an audience and a live-by-satellite Q&A; at home on a disc with copious behind-the-scenes extras (we're promised a "digital masterclass"); or just flick on the telly. Whichever you choose, you can see the film from July 5.
"We have tried to innovate with this film," says Wheatley, "in production and distribution. It's great to team up with Film4 to make this film and to work with new partners such as Picturehouse and 4DVD. I'm very proud of the results and look forward to sharing the film with the audience."
"Ben is undoubtedly one of our boldest, brightest and most audience savvy filmmakers," says Sue Bruce-Smith, Film4's head of commercial and brand strategy. "It made complete sense to look to develop a project with him that would lend itself to this kind of daring and innovative release. We’re lucky to have found in Picturehouse Entertainment, 4DVD, the Film4 channel and the BFI partners who share our vision to disrupt the status quo and experiment with new distribution patterns, to create this exciting event style release.”
The film, as you likely know by now, involves a small group of Civil War deserters fleeing from a battle and captured by two men, one of whom is an alchemist. Our not-so-laughing Cavaliers are forced into joining a search for treasure that's supposed to be buried in the overgrown field they're crossing, but things go psychedelically awry when they source their first meal together from a large mushroom circle...
A Field in England is written by Amy Jump and produced by Claire Jones and Andy Starke at Rook Films, with Anna Higgs Executive Producer for Film4. It's the first feature to be developed and fully financed through Film4’s "innovation hub" Film4.0, and, we'll say it again, the date to put in your diaries is July 5.