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THE WEIGHT OF WATER

In Development

Adaptation by Shona Auerbach

of the book by Sarah Crossan

Arriving from Poland with a mother who is obsessed with finding her deserted father, Kasienka’s only refuge from her homesickness is in the water, until she secretly finds her father herself.  


The Weight of Water follows the journey of Kasienka, a 12 year old girl, brought over from Poland by her obsessive mother in order to find her father, who deserted the family several years before. Kasienka feels the quest is futile and just wants to go back home. Money is tight these days and their only lead is a postmark on a letter, and so they move into a small bedsit in a block of flats in Coventry. Life is not easy, Mama gets a cleaning job in the local hospital and Kasienka struggles to fit in at school. They both embark on a street by street, door to door search for Tata. This continually draws a blank until out of the blue, with their help of their new neighbour Kanoro, Kasienka finds her father, and without telling Mama she starts to visit him.

 

We recently gained the support of the BFI Young Audience Content Fund, to develop a second draft of the screenplay, and start initial casting, to find a new young actor to play our Polish protagonist Kasienka. 

Director’s statement

I fell in love with this book the moment I read it and knew instantly I wanted to make it into a film. Its lyrical quality, along with the captivating human story, truly touched me. I felt deeply connected to it and I wasn’t exactly sure why this was. Was it because the protagonist was a 12 year old girl who had a tenacious strength of character? Maybe the fierce love in a mother daughter relationship? Or was it because I wanted to capture that feeling of being an outsider and not feeling accepted? Could it be because I understand the difficulties of immigration and the human need to find a unit, no matter how unconventional? Was it the familiarity of the Midlands? ...Having grown up there. Or was it just because it was a beautiful story, which is so universal? I soon realised that it is all these things and more.

With subtle, yet emotional performances, simple but beautiful photography and the unique backdrop of Coventry, this will be a film with a beating heart. It is a story about life and how relationships are complex, told through characters who have depth, integrity and humanity. It shows how quiet courage prevails which I feel is both powerful and inspiring. Realising stories like this is the reason that I have always wanted to make films, and why, many years back, I went to film school in the first place.

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