Prime Video has released the official trailer and poster for Catherine Called Birdy, the new film opening in theaters September 23 and debuting globally on Prime Video October 7.
Written and directed by Lena Dunham, the Catherine Called Birdy is rated PG-13 for some suggestive material and thematic elements. It is based on Catherine, Called Birdy by Karen Cushman (See on Amazon).
Premiering at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival, the film is produced by Eric Fellner, Tim Bevan, Lena Dunham, and Jo Wallett.
At just 14, Lady Catherine of Stonebridge Manor (Ramsey), known to all as Birdy, dreams of roaming the world while having countless adventures, just like her Uncle George (Alwyn), who has joined the Crusades. Her indulgent mother, Lady Aislinn (Piper), allows her to skip some of the mundane tasks of a young girl in return for keeping a diary that she shares with her brother Edward, a cloistered monk.
Aside from her lofty plans for the future, her entries mostly consist of complaints about her ill-tempered father, Lord Rollo (Scott); her brutish brother Robert (Chapman); and the rules set by her devoted nurse Morwenna (Sharp).
But her family has its own plans for her. Her spendthrift father is deep in debt and can think of only one way to resolve it — and pay for the leopard he just acquired. He will marry off his daughter to a wealthy suitor.
Horrified to realize the future that awaits, Birdy vows to avoid her mother’s fate: bound to a feckless man and having another baby every year.
When potential suitors begin to arrive at the castle, Birdy, with the help of her childhood playmates, goatherd Perkin (Michael Woolfitt) and the servant girl Meg (Rita Bernard-Shaw), unleashes ever more inventive ways to drive them off, from turning up to meet prospects dressed as a “bogwitch,” bringing her pet birds everywhere with her or singing enthusiastically and aggressively off-key.
When her beloved George returns from the Middle East, it sends her heart singing, and then seething with jealousy when she sees him kissing her best friend Aelis (Hainsworth). George and Aelis’ hopes of a love match are quickly quashed, however.
Their families force them to make more advantageous marriages: George to Ethelfritha (Okonedo), an older widow left a fortune by her first husband, and Aelis to a wealthy 9-year-old, reminding Birdy of how little control they all have over their futures.
Birdy’s final prospect is also her worst: Lord Shaggy Beard, an elderly aristocrat renowned for drunkenness and vulgar behavior. Her usual tricks fail her when Shaggy Beard (Kaye) finds the prospect of taming his wayward bride-to-be amusing.
Catherine Called Birdy is a Working Title Films and Good Thing Going production. The executive producers are Liz Watson (Industry) and Michael P. Cohen.
The director of photography is Laurie Rose (Rebecca), co-production designers are Kave Quinn (Emma., The Great) and Andrea Matheson (Emma.), the costume designer is Julian Day (Rocketman, Bohemian Rhapsody), the editor is Joe Klotz (Motherless Brooklyn) and the music is composed by Carter Burwell (The Tragedy of Macbeth, Carol).
Mirko Parlevliet has been reporting on the entertainment industry since 1998 and founded Vital Thrills in 2018 to cover the latest streaming, movie, TV, and video game news. Mirko previously created the websites ComingSoon, Spider-Man Hype!, SuperHeroHype and ShockTillYouDrop.