×
Back to IndieWire

Margaret Qualley’s Dominatrix Drama ‘Sanctuary’ Lands at Neon’s Super

Qualley stars as a dominatrix with disastrous intentions against a wealthy client, played by "Girls" alum Christopher Abbott.

Sanctuary, Margaret Qualley

“Sanctuary”

TIFF

Neon is getting in bed with “Sanctuary.”

Super, the boutique distribution label from Neon, has officially whipped up the distribution rights to dominatrix drama “Sanctuary” starring Margaret Qualley and Christopher Abbott.

Penned by “Homecoming” co-creator Micah Bloomberg and directed by SXSW “The Heart Machine” helmer Zachary Wigon, “Sanctuary” takes place over the course of one night in a hotel room where Rebecca (Qualley) seduces her elite client Hal (Abbott) to disastrous ends. Hal attempts to terminate his relationship with Rebecca, as he is poised to inherit his late father’s professional position and fortune, but Rebecca has other ideas in store for how to punish him for daring to cross her. What’s the safe word, again?

Super beat out three other distribution banners for “Sanctuary” after its critically acclaimed premiere at 2022 TIFF.

“Sanctuary” is a Rumble Films Production in association with Charades, Mosaic Films and Hype Studios. The film is produced by David Lancaster and Stephanie Wilcox of Rumble Films with Ilya Stewart of Hype Studios and Pavel Burian of Mosaic Films. In addition to Bloomberg, executive producers include Carole Baraton, Yohann Comte, Pierre Mazars of Charades, Elizaveta Chalenko, Maxim Dashkin, Nick Shumaker, as well as Qualley and Bloomberg.

Lead star and executive producer Qualley previously called “Sanctuary” a “bizarre love story,” telling Collider that playing a dominatrix is not like what one might assume.

“That lends itself to a connotation that makes it seem like a lot more sexy than it really is. In reality, it’s not S&M or anything. It’s psychological domineering,” Qualley said. “But it was so fun.”

She added, “It’s certainly lighter than [‘Maid’]. It’s not comedic. There are comedic elements, but it’s still heavy.”

IndieWire critic David Ehlrich praised the film for being “such a salaciously enjoyable slice of snack-sized fun” with an unpredictable plot that toys with what it really means to roleplay.

Distributor Super also recently picked up Alice Diop’s “Saint Omer,” which won the Silver Lion and Lion of the Future at the Venice Film Festival, plus the North American distribution rights to Colm Bairéad’s “The Quiet Girl (An Cailín Ciúin),” which was recently announced as Ireland’s entry for Best International Feature for the 2023 Oscars. Super, led by Darcy Heusel and Dan O’Meara, previously released Oscar-nominated “Quo Vadis, Aida?.”

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Film and tagged , , , ,


Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox