10. October 2014

After Silver Linings Playbook but before American Hustle, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence teamed up to play the romantic leads in the dark period pic Serena. Long in limbo, Serena will have its much-anticipated European premiere on 13 October at the BFI London Film Festival and opens in UK cinemas on 24 October, with its US release set for February/March 2015. Based on the New York Times bestseller by Ron Rash set in Great Depression-era North Carolina, Serena was filmed back in 2012, mainly at sets in the Czech Republic built on location, including a logging camp and an American town with a train station. The production spent more than 200 million Czech crowns locally ($10.5m), with local professionals making up 80% of the film’s 250-member crew. Serena is the story of newlyweds George and Serena Pemberton, hell bent on building a timber empire together, whatever the costs. But their ambition and passionate love both threaten to unravel when Serena learns of George’s hidden past, and her own tragic fate. Cooper and Lawrence’s onscreen chemistry is palpable – and bankable – with both winning Oscar nominations for their roles in David O. Russel’s Hustle and Playbook (for which the young Hunger Games star took home an Academy Award for Best Actress). Could the third time be the charm for leading man Bradley Cooper? Serena, helmed by Danish auteur Susanne Bier, who won a best foreign language film Oscar for A Better World, features a strong supporting cast, including Australian actor Sam Reid (The Railway Man) and three Brits – Rhys Ifans (Notting Hill), Toby Jones (Frost/Nixon) and Sean Harris (The Borgias series).