Many consider the original to be perfect, but “Ryan’s Daughter” star Sarah Miles has set out to pen a sequel to the classic Irish film.
Miles’ agent announced that the English actress, who was nominated for an Oscar for her role as the unforgettable Rosy Ryan in the award-winning film, is currently conducting research in Ireland for the sequel.
“She is writing a script and there is a producer for a film, but it's very early days,” her agent said.
Miles’ husband, Robert Bolt, who penned “Doctor Zhivago” and “A Man for All Seasons,” wrote the original script, while David Lean, the famous director of “Lawrence of Arabia” and “The Bridge on the River Kwai,” directed.
“Ryan’s Daughter” bombed in box offices when it was released in 1970, but has since become a beloved, classic Irish film, and is considered to be one of Lean’s best works.
The story is set in 1916 Ireland during World War I.
Rosy Ryan, who lives on the quiet Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry, has an affair with a British officer, much to the dismay of the nationalist villagers. What ensues is a violent struggle between British and Irish, informers and nationalists, husband and lover.
One of the film’s most famous scenes, in which Rosy commits adultery with the British officer (played by Christopher Jones) in a lush Irish forest, was considered distasteful by 1970 Irish audiences who were submerged in a time of heightened violence in Northern Ireland.
But strong performances by Miles as Rosy, Hollywood great Robert Mitchum as her schoolteacher husband, and John Mills as the village idiot (who won an Oscar for the role), as well as a strong dose of Irish romanticism and breathtaking cinematography, have since overshadowed the controversial subject matter of “Ryan’s Daughter.”
Irish film fans will have to wait and see how Miles’ sequel turns out, but one thing’s for sure: she has a tough act to follow.
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