Rowan Joffe is making his debut as a feature director with the film noir “Brighton Rock,” which opened Friday. It's based on Graham Greene’s acclaimed 1938 book, which was adapted into a 1947 classic gangster film of the same name starring a young Richard Attenborough.
The new “Brighton Rock” stars Sam Riley as Pinkie, a vicious young hoodlum trying to make a name for himself among the mobs in Brighton circa 1964. Andrea Riseborough plays Rose, a naive young woman who works as a waitress and becomes involved with Pinkie. Oscar winner Helen Mirren, John Hurt and Andy Serkis also star in the film, which played the Toronto Film Festival last September and was released theatrically in England in February.
Joffe, whose mother is Tony Award-winning actress Jane Lapotaire (“Piaf”), wrote several TV movies in England, as well as the 2007 feature, “28 Weeks Later” and last year’s George Clooney thriller, “The American.” He wrote and directed the 2008 British TV movie “The Shooting of Thomas Hurndall,” which won the British Academy of Film and Television Award for best single drama.
Joffe's father, Roland Joffe, made a big splash internationally, earning best director Oscar nominations for 1984’s “The Killing Fields” and 1985’s “The Mission.” His latest film, “There Be Dragons,” came out this year.