Eva Green and Gemma Arterton are Victorian literary stars—and lovers—in Vita & Virginia, Chanya Button’s upcoming biopic about Virginia Woolf (Green) and Vita Sackville-West (Arterton).
The film tracks the friendship, and eventual love affair, between the two Bloomsbury group members, a relationship that inspired Woolf’s novel Orlando. Both women were married to men, but carried on affairs with women throughout their lives.
Button calls Vita and Virginia “a visceral love story, a vivid exploration of creativity, and an energized perspective on one of our most iconic writers.”
“We so often associate women of the past with oppression, bound by the duties of marriage, propriety and domesticity,” she added. “But what Vita & Virginia offers is… a relationship where bold, brilliant women bent these institutions to their will at great personal cost.”
Button co-wrote the screenplay with Dame Eileen Atkins, who wrote the 1993 play the film is based on. It’s the first time Green and Arterton have appeared on screen together, though coincidentally both have appeared in James Bond films.
“This is a playful and sexual Virginia Woolf, far removed from the gloom often associated with her,” says Protagonist Pictures CEO Mike Goodridge. “And Vita Sackville-West is a vivacious and flamboyant character who dominates high society in London in the 1920s.”
Production on Vita & Virginia is expected to begin later this year.