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Emilia Clarke to Play Oscar Wilde’s Wife and Irish Author, Constance Lloyd, in Sophie Hyde’s ‘An Ideal Wife’

Emilia Clarke is set to star as Constance Lloyd, an Irish author who was married to Oscar Wilde, in “An Ideal Wife,” directed by “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande” helmer Sophie Hyde.

The project, for which plot details are still being kept under wraps, is repped by Embankment Films (“The Father,” “The Son”) and will be shopped at this week’s American Film Market, which kicks off on Tuesday.

“An Ideal Wife” will shed light on Lloyd, who was an author and feminist activist who took part in the dress reform movement, which campaigned to allow women to dress in comfortable clothing rather than the stifling Victorian dresses of the era. Lloyd married Wilde in 1884 and the couple had two sons. However, after Wilde received a two-year prison term for homosexuality, which was still illegal at the time (it would only be decriminalized in England and Wales in 1967), Lloyd moved to Switzerland with their children, and distanced them from the writer.

“An Ideal Wife” will mark Hyde’s follow-up to “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande,” which starred Emma Thompson and Daryl McCormack and virtually premiered at Sundance and screened at the Berlinale. The pic was released domestically by Searchlight. Hyde’s feature debut, “52 Tuesdays,” won best director at Sundance and garnered a Crystal Bear prize at Berlin. Her sophomore outing, “Animals,” also played at Sundance and won best debut screenplay at the British Independent Film Awards.  

“An Ideal Wife” is being produced by Olivier Delbosc at Paris-based Curiosa Films (“Stars at Noon”), Chris Curling (“Falling”) at Zephyr Films in the U.K. and Matthew Gledhill (“Madame”) at Wheelhouse Productions.

Clarke’s upcoming projects include “McCarthy,” Václav Marhoul’s film about the disgraced American senator Joseph McCarthy, in which she will star opposite Michael Shannon.

Embankment Films’ slate also includes Pam MacKinnon’s “Clybourne Park,” starring Sarah Paulson, Anthony Mackie and Martin Freeman; Frances O’Connor’s “Emily,” starring Emma Mackey as the writer Emily Brontë; and Florian Zeller’s “The Son” starring Hugh Jackman, Laura Dern and Vanessa Kirby.

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