Amazon Studios and Anonymous Content have started principal photography on the feature film Birds of Paradise from writer and director Sarah Adina Smith (Buster’s Mal Heart, “Hanna”). Currently shooting in Budapest, Birds of Paradise stars Kristine Froseth (The Assistant, Looking for Alaska) and Diana Silvers (Space Force, Booksmart), and is produced by Anonymous Content’s Trevor Adley and Dara Gordon alongside Jonako Donley at Everything is Everything.
Based off the novel Bright Burning Stars from author A.K. Small, Birds of Paradise is set at a prestigious ballet school in Paris, where the new girl (Silvers) befriends a grieving dance prodigy (Froseth) as the dancers compete for the school’s ultimate prize: to receive a contract to join the Parisian Opera’s ballet company. As the pressure mounts and the girls are pushed to their physical and emotional limits, their bond is tested and they’re forced to ask themselves just how far they are willing to go to win.
“Sarah is a talented, visionary filmmaker who we’re so happy is part of the Amazon family, and we can’t wait to bring her next story to life with Birds of Paradise,” said Julie Rapaport, Co-head of Movies at Amazon Studios. “We’re also thrilled to be working with stars Diana Silvers and Kristine Froseth who are both on the path to becoming the next household names with their undeniable talents.”
Smith added, “I wrote these roles specifically for Kristine Froseth and Diana Silvers, who I believe are going to take the world by storm. I’m honored to take this journey with them and so thrilled to be partnering with Amazon Studios once again in pursuit of bold, unapologetic filmmaking.”
Sarah Adina Smith is a writer and director who has the ability to work across genre, from thriller & action to psychological horror to character drama. Birds of Paradise cements her relationship with Amazon Studios, where she is under a first look television deal via her company Everything is Everything. Sarah directed the pilot and second episode of the series adaptation of “Hanna” for the streamer and served as co-executive producer of the series. She directed the first episode Hulu’s series adaptation of “Looking for Alaska”, based on the beloved John Green novel. Sarah is also co-writing a pilot for FX through Searchlight Television. Sarah wrote and directed the feature film Buster’s Mal Heart, starring Oscar & Emmy Award winner Rami Malek, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. Her first feature, The Midnight Swim, won six top prizes on the festival circuit, including the breakthrough audience award from AFI FEST. Her other television credits include two episodes of “Room 104 for HBO, and an episode of “Legion” for FX.