THE EMPRESS OF ELBA
Drama/Romance/History USA/France/Italy, 2019
Sofia, a fiercely independent bordello owner, offers more than advice to the recently exiled Napoleon. While helping him govern his new island prison, she clandestinely spies on his
enemies. Can their illicit relationship survive a dangerous plot to have the “Nightmare of Europe” assassinated?
Screenplay written by: Barry O'Connell (Canada)
Producer: Anna Karolina Heinrich (USA/AT)
Co-Producer: to be determined
Director: to be determined
Filming Location: Elba Island (Italy)
Creative Director: Andreas Jurgen Heinrich (AT)
Production Status: in Development
Over the past 25 years, Barry O'Connell has been a contributing entertainment professional in several capacities.
For the theatre, he has written and directed "Primadonna: Confessions of an Italian Princess" for the St-Ambroise Fringe Theatre Festival in June 2007.
Amy German of Hour Magazine described it as:
"An exploration of identity, double standards, Catholic guilt, the female sisterhood and various other cultural aspects of being Italian, it is one of this year's true festival gems. At times, this culturally poignant act was intensely hilarious, while other moments caused tears to run down the cheeks of its ultimately captivated audience.”
In December 2010, he produced and adapted “A Christmas Carol” for the legendary Rialto Theatre. Neil Boyce of Montreal Mirror Magazine described the production:
“Everything about the evening seemed thrown into the time machine of the place. The half-play, half-musical production uses nearly all the text from Dickens’ story, interspersed with traditional Christmas tunes in a beautiful ornamentation... the perfect show for the season — and not just for kids.”
As a producer with the Irish Theatre Festival, he mounted several engaging productions at the D.B. Clarke Theatre, and most notably, the Dublin Theatre Company's production of J.P.Donleavy's "The Ginger Man", at the Centaur Theatre, before touring Ottawa and Toronto. With Karma Productions, as its co-founder, Mr. O'Connell produced "The Rocky Horror Show Live!" at Theatre Olympia for Divers/Citè and the 1st Out Games.
As a performer, after getting his start in the international touring production of Robert Hossein's "Jèsus Etait Son Nom", roles have included Frank Butler in MBL Events production of "Annie Get Your Gun", Martin Dysart in McGill Player’s Theatre production of “Equus”. He has also donned a corset and pearls in his critically acclaimed performance as Frank 'n Furter in "The Rocky Horror Show Live!"
As a screenwriter, his TV miniseries SURREAL LOVE has been optioned by producer David Raymond. His feature film GRETCHEN has been optioned by Nils Dunker at Lailaps Films.
BARRY O’CONNELL (Canada)