First Look Into The Face Of An Angel

Teaser appears for Michael Winterbottom's Amanda Knox drama

It’s usually wise to approach any film promising to “go beyond the truth” with an element of caution – how do you go beyond the truth? Is there a bus? – but Michael Winterbottom is a filmmaker with a strong track record in handling true-life stories with care and diligence. The Face Of An Angel is a slightly unusual case, though. Watch its first teaser-trailer-clip-type-thing below and see what you think.

The film springboards off a book by The Daily Beast’s Rome stringer Barbie Latza Nadeau called Angel Face: Sex, Murder And The Inside Story of Amanda Knox. Nadeau investigated the strange circumstances behind Amanda Knox’s time in Italy in 2009.

Knox (Cara Delevingne) and her boyfriend of the time, Raffaele Sollecito, were convicted of killing their Perugia housemate Meredith Kercher in 2009, spending two years in prison for the crime. Cue a cycle of appeals, exoneration, re-appeals and general confusion from the wider world at the vagaries of the Italian justice system. With a thin veil of fiction here, Knox appears to have been renamed Jessica, with Kercher called Elizabeth.

The currency of Winterbottom’s drama is, of course, diminished by the latest appeal and the case’s impending presence before the supreme court. But we don’t need to worry about any of that here because, as the director told The Hollywood Reporter last year, his interest is less in courtroom shenanigans and more in the human beings behind the story.

"We bought the rights to the book that tells the story of the trial, but our film is not really about that, so we are always a bit wary of even saying that," he explained. "Our film is actually about losing a daughter, losing someone close to you; why are we so interested in violence and why are we not more interested in love."

Pursuing the story are Daniel Brühl, a documentary maker, and a reporter called Simone Ford (played Kate Beckinsale and presumably a Nadeau cipher). Winterbottom, BBC Films and the producers will be hawking The Face Of An Angel at the Berlin Film Festival. The film’s pedigree and recent Knox media coverage should ensure plenty of interest.