Olivia Colman and Gemma Jones looking shocked in Wicked Little Letters.

Rumours, Rumours

Posted by Speakeasy News > Tuesday 12 March 2024 > What's On

Definitely not one to show your pupils! Wicked Little Letters is a delicious comedy with Olivia Colman and Jessie Buckley,  set in a 1920s English seaside town, where the population starts receiving defamatory letters full of profanities. An Irish migrant with a good stock of swear words in her vocabulary, Rose Gooding is accused of being the author of the letters. But the women of the town begin to doubt her guilt.

The film is actually based on a real case, which took place in Littlehampton, a seaside town in Sussex. In the days before internet trolling, poison-pen letters fulfilled the same role of venting your fury. In this case, most of the ire seems to be directed at innocuous spinster Edith Swan (Colman), who lives at home with her mother (Gemma Jones) and domineering father (Timothy Spall). But much like trolling today, the poison-pen letters had real-life consequences when single mother Rose (Buckley) is charged with criminal libel.

This is the second time Olivia Colman (The Crown, The Favourite, The Father, Wonka) and Jessie Buckley (Wild Rose, The Woman in White) have starred together. Buckley played the younger version of Colman's character in the 2021 adaptation of the Elena Ferrante novel The Lost Daughter. Look out for Buckley in the upcoming adaptation of Maggie O'Farrell's Hamnet by Chloe Zhao and Colman in Wicker with Dev Patel.

This video gives some of the background about the true story, including that of the first female police officer in Sussex, played by Anjana Vasan, but doesn't contain spoilers.

Wicked Little Letters
On general release 13 March.

Poster for Wicked Little Letters with Olivia Colman, Jessie Buckley, Ajana Vasan and Timothy Spall and a post box.

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