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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Ireland / UK

Jim Sheridan prepping documentary series Murder at the Cottage

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- The Irish playwright and filmmaker’s new project delves into the murder of television producer Sophie Toscan du Plantier in West Cork

Jim Sheridan prepping documentary series Murder at the Cottage
Director Jim Sheridan (© Birgit Heidsiek)

Oscar-nominated Irish playwright and filmmaker Jim Sheridan is now working on his first documentary series project, entitled Murder at the Cottage: The Search for Justice for Sophie. The Dublin-born helmer is best known for his fiction films My Left Foot (1989), In the Name of the Father (1993), The Boxer (1997) and In America (2002).

The five-part documentary series revolves around the murder of television producer Sophie Toscan du Plantier in West Cork, Ireland. In 1996, two days before Christmas, Sophie, the wife of French filmmaker Daniel Toscan du Plantier, was killed at her holiday cottage in Schull. The murder rocked the quiet Irish town, and 24 years later, the case remains a mystery. The key suspect, journalist Ian Bailey, was quickly arrested by local police following eye-witness reports, yet was never found guilty in Ireland, owing to a lack of reliable evidence. Despite this, Bailey was found guilty in absentia by French courts in 2019 and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Having successfully fought repeated extradition requests from the French authorities, Bailey still resides in West Cork and maintains his innocence to this day. The news was first reported by Variety.

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Murder at the Cottage: The Search for Justice for Sophie is being produced by the director himself and Irish investigative journalist Donal MacIntyre for Dare Films (Ireland). The executive producers are Catherine O’Flaherty for Hell’s Kitchen (Ireland) and Gary Davey for Sky Studios (UK). NBCUniversal Global Distribution is in charge of its international sales on behalf of Sky Studios. The series is set to air on Sky Crime in 2021. Meanwhile, Netflix has announced another untitled three-part series on the same case, directed by John Dower and slated for 2021 as well.

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