Alumna Hope Dickson Leach '05 Directs ‘Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’ Hybrid
BY Felix van Kann, January 12, 2022
Alumna Hope Dickson Leach '05 is set to direct a hybrid adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in Edinburgh, Scotland. The project will launch as a theatrical live experience on February 25, 26 and 27, 2022 during which audiences will enter a live film set built within the atmospheric setting of Edinburgh’s historic Leith Theatre. The final performance will also be live streamed to select Scottish cinemas. The footage captured during the performances will then be edited into a black and white feature film, which will be broadcast on Sky Arts in the fall of 2023.
Transporting the story from London to Victorian Edinburgh, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde follows Gabriel Utterson as he attempts to uncover the identity of the mysterious Mr. Hyde and the hold he has over Utterson’s old friend Dr. Jekyll.
Dickson Leach made three short films that played at festivals worldwide during her studies at Columbia. While in New York she was assistant to Todd Solondz on his film Palindromes. Dickson Leach’s award-winning thesis film, The Dawn Chorus, was selected for Sundance, Edinburgh, London and many other festivals. Screen International made her a Star of Tomorrow and Filmmaker Magazine named her one of the ‘25 New Faces of Independent Film’. Since her return to the UK, she has made further acclaimed short works for Channel 4, Film London, the UK Film Council, NOWNESS and the National Theatre of Scotland. Her debut feature The Levelling had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2016 before screening at festivals all over the world. At the London Film Festival she was awarded the inaugural IWC Filmmaker Bursary Award in Association with the BFI, and in October 2017 she was named a BAFTA Breakthrough Brit. She won a Scottish BAFTA for Best Screenwriter for The Levelling in November 2017. She is currently developing several new feature films in the US and UK and is a co-founder of Raising Films - a campaign to make the film industry more parent-friendly. Dickson Leach lives in Scotland with her husband and two sons.