Netflix has taken over Thomas M. Wright’s Australian crime thriller The strangerwhich had its world premiere at Cannes earlier this year, with plans to launch worldwide in October.
The film, starring Joel Edgerton and Sean Harris, comes from See-Saw Films, Anonymous Content and Blue Tongue Films, and centers on two strangers who strike up a conversation on a long journey. One is a suspect in an unsolved missing person case, the other is an undercover cop on his trail. Their uneasy friendship lies at the heart of the plot, based on the true story of one of Australia’s largest investigations and undercover operations.
“Of The stranger I wanted to make a psychological crime film that took audiences to a place that is hidden – a film that was authentic and realistic in its details, but also immersive and cinematic. A film that demanded attention and investment. A movie that an audience can lean into — and fall into,” said Wright, who was featured as an actor on Jane Campion’s series top of the lake (also produced by See-Saw Films).
“I aimed the film at people who didn’t know the victim, but who have devoted years of their lives – and their mental and physical health – to them; because while violence is the reason for this film, it is not its subject. The subject is the connections between people. That means to me this is a movie defined by empathy,” Wright continued.
Wright added: “It is unprecedented for an independent Australian film to premiere at its official selection in Cannes – and then be taken to the largest audience, where a Netflix film is unprecedented. We couldn’t be more proud of this film or of partnering with Netflix to bring it to an international audience.”
Before launching on Netflix, The stranger will hit theaters in Australia, where it will also premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival on August 5.