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Riz Virk

Project will star Rekha Sharma and is being written/directed by Leena Pendharkar

LOS ANGELES, CA — February 28, 2018 — Bayview Films, a division of Bayview Labs LLC, announced today that production is set to begin on a new feature film adaptation of Ursula K. Le Guin’s acclaimed science fiction novel The Telling. The film will star Rekha Sharma (“Battlestar Galactica”, “Star Trek: Discovery”), and is being written and directed by Leena Pendharkar (20 WEEKS, RASPBERRY MAGIC).
THE TELLING follows Sutty Dass (Sharma), an observer for the interstellar Ekumen, as she travels from war-torn Earth to the planet Aka, which has suppressed its rich culture in the march to technological advancement. Traveling from city to small town, Sutty discovers the remnants of a banned religion and a hidden culture. As she moves deeper into the countryside and the desolate mountains, she learns more about the Telling — the old faith of the Akans — and more about herself. With her creation of this intricate environment, author Ursula K. Le Guin invites us to reflect on our own complicated history and the price of progress.
Acclaimed actress Rekha Sharma is most widely known for her role on the Peabody award winning series “Battlestar Galactica”, as well as for key roles on “The 100”, “V”, and “Supernatural”. Sharma currently guest stars in “Star Trek: Discovery”.
The film is adapted and directed by Leena Pendharkar, whose previous film 20 WEEKS earned acclaim on the festival circuit last year after world premiering at the Los Angeles Film Festival, and will be released theatrically in the spring of this year. Pendharkar also previously directed RASPBERRY MAGIC.
Pendharkar says, “I’m honored to bring the work of one of science fiction’s most esteemed writers to the screen especially in these times when strong female voices are needed. The Telling is a humanistic science fiction film about a woman trying to find her way in a culture overrun by technology.”
THE TELLING is produced by Rizwan Virk, founder of Bayview Films, whose resume in the world of science fiction and fantasy includes KNIGHTS OF BADASSDOM (starring Peter Dinklage and Summer Glau), THRIVE (a UFO documentary seen over 70 million times), the MYTHICA fantasy series (starring Kevin Sorbo), and RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH, adapted from the novel by Philip K. Dick. Joining the producing team is JD Seraphine, producer of SIRIUS — one of the most successful crowdfunded documentaries of all time, as well as the upcoming biopic based on the life of Nolan Bushnell, founder of ATARI and godfather of the video game industry.
Virk says, “I’ve been a fan of Ursula K. Le Guin’s science fiction and fantasy for many years. Our team had been working on the script for THE TELLING with her over the past few years, and we were extremely saddened to hear of her recent passing.”
“THE TELLING brings together a very personal story of self-exploration while exploring much broader themes related to science, alien civilizations, religious freedom, and technological progress. The reason I chose this particular novel was that Le Guin’s vision of the Ekumen shows a very different model for interstellar co-operation than most popular science fiction today, and I wanted the world to see what that was like on screen.”
Production for THE TELLING is slated to start in 2018 with a theatrical release in 2019.
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About Bayview Films

Bayview Films, a division of Bayview Labs, ( started by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Rizwan Virk, has produced, invested in, and/or co-produced a number of science fiction, fantasy, and documentary films. These include KNIGHTS OF BADASSDOM (starring Peter Dinklage and Summer Glau), THRIVE: WHAT ON EARTH WILL IT TAKE, a documentary which has been seen over 70 million times, TURQUOISE ROSE (one of the first films shot on the Navajo reservation using Navajo actors), RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH, adapted from the Philip K Dick novel of the same name, and the MYTHICA fantasy series (starring Kevin Sorbo).

About Ursula K. Le Guin

Ursula K. Le Guin was an American author of novels, children’s books, and short stories, mainly in the genres of fantasy (including her Earthsea series) and science fiction (including her Hainish Cycle). First published in the 1960s, her work has often depicted futuristic or imaginary alternative worlds in politics, the natural environment, gender, religion, sexuality and ethnography. She has published over twenty novels and received many honors and awards including Hugo, Nebula, National Book Award, PEN-Malamud, and the National Book Foundation Medal, and was named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of American in 2002.

About The Telling

The Telling is a 2000 science fiction novel by Ursula K. Le Guin set in her fictional universe of Hainish Cycle. The Telling was Le Guin’s first follow-up novel set in the Hainish Cycle since her 1974 novel The Dispossessed and 1969’s The Left Hand of Darkness. It tells the story of Sutty, a Terran sent to be an Ekumen observer, on the planet Aka, and her experiences of political and religious conflicts between a corporatist government and the indigenous resistance, which is centered on the traditions of storytelling, locally referred to as “the Telling” (for which the book is named).
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