Karey Kirkpatrick to direct Irish/Austrian co-production Faraway Home
Hollywood director, writer, producer Karey Kirkpatrick, best known for Imagine That (Paramount Pictures), Smallfoot (Warner Bros), The Spiderwick Chronicles (Paramount Pictures), and Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy (Touchstone) has signed on to direct the Powerscourt Pictures / KGP Filmproduktion GmbH Kindertransport feature film, Faraway Home, in 2022.
The film will be Karey’s next film project after his Broadway premiere of Mrs. Doubtfire the Musical later in 2021, as Broadway reopens.
Faraway Home is being produced by David Barron, who produced Harry Potter (Warner Bros), Cinderella (Disney), The Legend of Tarzan (Warner Bros) and Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle (Netflix), and Irish producer Stephen Gibson (The Callback Queen and Saol) for Powerscourt Pictures. Powerscourt have offices in Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Los Angeles. The film is a European co-pro, with Barbara Pichler and Gabriele Kranzelbinder producing for KGP Filmproduktion GmbH, Vienna, Austria.
The Faraway Home screenplay is by Stephen Gibson and Clare Sera. Clare wrote Blended with Adam Sandler & Drew Barrymore (Warner Bros), and Smallfoot with Channing Tatum & Zendaya (Warner Bros), she has worked with Disney, and Paramount, and is a partner at Powerscourt Pictures.
The script is based on the Irish book Faraway Home written by Marilyn Taylor. The screenplay for the film was developed with investment from Northern Ireland Screen, Fís Éireann / Screen IrelandFís Éireann/Screen Ireland (FÉ/SI) is the national development agency for Irish filmmaking and the Irish film, television and animation industry., and the Vienna FilmCommission. It will be shot in Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Vienna.
I want to share this story with the world because I believe stories like this can change perceptions, soften hardened hearts and maybe force us to see those we vilify and devalue for what they truly are…as people. People who are worthy of respect and dignity and love.
Faraway Home is a tragic yet beautiful story, the journey of two young Jewish children sent by their parents away from Nazi-occupied Austria during World War Two on the Kindertransport to London, where they finally end up at a Jewish refugee farm in Northern Ireland, smack in the middle of the Irish/ British, Catholic/Protestant troubles… As they wonder if they will ever see their family again, the German bombs hit Belfast during the 1941 blitz; the war, brought back to their doorsteps.
Based on true events, Siblings Karl and Rosa Muller (12 and 7), are put on the Kindertransport, a last chance for Jewish children to escape Vienna as Hitler moves in. A story that finds hope and even laughter in the midst of great pain, Faraway Home has its beginnings in the little-known Kindertransport, a refugee program started by Britain for Jewish children to escape Hitler’s reach.
Told through the eyes of a recently bar mitzvah’d Jewish boy Karl, who struggles with what it means to be a man in his new circumstances. With his younger sister Rosa, who only ever knew life as a beloved little princess, he finds himself in a rundown farm-turned-sanctuary that is filled with other refugee Jewish children. They are faced with the challenge of creating a self-sustaining farm and a true community with refugees and locals who are well-intentioned, but inexperienced volunteers, leading to a heart-warming, hilarious, and sometimes heart-breaking story.
Karl cannot let go of a dream to save his parents left behind in Austria. With the help of his friends, his plans are to escape across the sea, but when German bombs hit Belfast in the 1941 blitz, the war is brought again to his doorstep. Karl, caught in the middle of it must make a decision and is again faced with the question, what is it to be a man?
Faraway Home is casting and crewing up in Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Austria, to shoot in early 2022.