Niki Caro has The Vintner's Luck

She’s back with Keisha Castle-Hughes

Since completing 2005’s sexual harassment drama North County, director Niki Caro has been hard at work adapting Elizabeth’s Knox’s angelic fantasy romance novel The Vintner’s Luck.

And now, with a completed script in hand, she’s also tracked down an actress to play one of the leads – Xas, the angelic being who visits an 18-year-old-wine grower. And it’ll be a Whale Rider reunion for Caro, as she’s cast Keisha Castle-Hughes.

Hughes will play Xas, who falls in love (and lust) with Earthly delights and particularly with Sobran (Jeremie Renier). It’s all set in 19th Century France and will start shooting in February next year, across New Zealand, France and Belgium. In addition to her main thesps, Caro has also recruited Gaspard Ulliel, Vera Farmiga and Maria Ruiz to fill out the cast.

So, then… an angel who falls in love with a mortal. Anyone want to guess when the first protests will be heard?


    • JohnQ80

      Apr 25th 2011, 19:52

      Found awesome stuff about the movie!!!! YAY! Can't wait to see it... So psyched! Author: TragedyAmber ..."The casting is almost perfect. Jeremy Renier, Gaspard Ulliel and Vera Farmiga are dead-on as far as appearance and mannerisms, and all do a wonderful job with the parts they play.".... ...Author: Adam001 ...."I was thrilled to hear Niki Caro was going to make this movie, no one else would have been able to portray the 'basic' elements of the novel better than she could and very well did. From start to finish the movie consisted of a real feeling of love and life. More so that she exactly put just that into making this film. The importance of simple things which when given love, sweat and time grow into something special, which if you haven't read the novel is the basic idea. There is a heavy pagan love of the earth atmosphere in the movie ensuring an uplifting feeling. Leading me onto the visuals which where spot on, the sweeping French vineyards and valleys where just as I imagined them. The casting was perfect, Sobran who is played by Jeremie Renier provided us with a inspiring and moving look at the trials and tribulations experienced by a 19th century wine maker. ".... Author: Clayboy44 ..."I saw The Vintner's Luck a few days ago at TIFF 2009 I have not been familiar with Niki Caro's work, had not read the book and really did not know what to expect.I came out of that film exhilarated. For me this was a passionate look at life, love, labour with a glimpse of spirituality. I thought the cast was exceptional in a film with beautiful photography and pace. The introduction of the angel was completely believable and added such a wonderful mystical element to this lyrical, romantic film.- Fallen but not evil. Ulliel was really perfect casting!"... Author: David Anderson ..."An unusually deep, reflective film from New Zealand. Niki Caro perfectly conveys 19th century French life with all its passions, despair, death, joy, love and lust. Mixing the warmth of blood and wine, she creates a film firmly in the European tradition, with all its subtlety, not driving us along on a rear mou...nted engine at a Hollywood pace but also not leaving us yawning in the arthouse. We care about the people and we want to know more. The making of wine becomes a metaphor for life and creation. The protagonist eats the soil to better detect the composition of its minerals and metals. As base materials can produce the sublime in the bottle, humanity can rise above its common constituents of flesh, bone, sinew and hope. There are some very good central performances. Keisha Castle-Hughes has become a real woman of passion. By contrast , Vera Farmiga perfectly unfolds the austere and remote Baroness as porcelain but with a heart aching for love and physical embrace. Also, fine performances from the three men interwoven into the lives of these women. Out of this crafted tale come surprises. We are led off the path of the straight costume narrative into altogether more challenging realms. We’re asked to embrace spirituality in an uncompromised form, fully fledged and feathered. The angel is not “interpreted” as Wim Wenders did expertly but with slight of hand in “Wings of Desire”. It’s a brave move, bound to cause division. But there is more, a double twist that resonates after the movie ends and demands more unpacking. The culminating scene with the angel and Sobran could be the ‘undoing’ or the ‘doing’ of the film. The very duality at the heart of the film is embedded in the celluloid, the edit and what’s projected on screen. But who wants a plastic toy in shrink wrap when you can unwrap layers of paper with rose petals between each sheet."... Author: Kate Rodger ..."The Vintner’s Luck was a gorgeous collection of imagery, sound and movement, with moments of intoxicating beauty"... Author: Danika Morris Brown ..."..a beautifully shot love letter to wine and the making of it"... Author: Neil Warren ..."Niki Caro's film left me elated at the end of the screening at TIFF. So much so that I went back to box office and secured another ticket for the final screening. I absolutely loved it and was compl...etely enthralled in the fantasy elements and incredible performances. The cast was pitch perfect. And after two weeks of screenings at TIFF it remained my favourite film of the festival."... Author: Sophie Cherry ..."Though a New Zealand film, this lush, erotic and passionate film is more European with its frank exploration of sexuality and eroticism, yet the film’s lyrical beauty and intelligence makes it something quite unexpected. A film about humanity and spirituality, Caro directs this film with an exquisite sense of detail. Gorgeous in all facets of visual detail, "The Vintner’s Luck" is also a fascinating romantic melodrama, and at its core, comprises a cast that is spot on."...

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