Official Secrets

Official Secrets

Made with investment from Screen Yorkshire

The dramatic and gripping true life story stars two-time Oscar®-nominated actress Keira Knightley as courageous journalist Katharine Gun, who leaked a top-secret National Security Agency memo, putting her life and career on the line and changing the course of modern history. Adapted by Academy Award® winning filmmaker Gavin Hood, the feature film is made with support and investment from Screen Yorkshire through its Yorkshire Content Fund. Matt Smith stars alongside Keira Knightley, with two-time Academy Award® nominee Ralph Fiennes and Matthew Goode.

Based on the book ‘The Spy Who Tried to Stop a War’, Official Secrets tells the true story of British secret-service officer Katharine Gun, who during the immediate run-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq leaked a top-secret National Security Agency memo. The memo—which exposed an illegal U.S.-U.K. spying operation against members of the United Nations Security Council—proposed blackmailing smaller, undecided member states into voting for war. Find a screening near me

Official Secrets. Image: Nick Wall

Gavin Hood (Eye in the Sky, Tsotsi) directs the gripping thriller and penned the script. Marking his second collaboration with Hood, Ged Doherty (Eye in the Sky, Loving) will produce with Elizabeth Fowler (Devil’s Knot) and Melissa Shiyu Zuo. Claudia Bluemhuber, Anne Sheehan, Hugo Heppell are executive producers.

Screen Yorkshire shared our ambition for this film to be both a commercial and creative success. They were very supportive and film-maker friendly

Ged Doherty, Producer, Official Secrets

The story of Katherine Gun, and the treatment of her and her husband by the UK Government, remain as relevant and shocking today as in 2003/4. We are very proud of 'Official Secrets'; Gavin Hood has directed a powerful and sensitive film, and Keira Knightley imbues Katherine with passionate integrity and heart-breaking vulnerability.

Hugo Heppell, Head of Investments, Screen Yorkshire


OFFICIAL SECRETS filmed primarily in Yorkshire with investment from Screen Yorkshire, at locations including: Leeds City Centre, Chapel Allerton, Roundhay, Boston Spa, Otley Police Station, Bradford City Hall, Shipley, Keighley and Worth Valley Railway and Robin Hood Airport, Doncaster and the Northern Film & TV Studios. Production Offices were based at Prime Studios. Additional scenes were filmed in Manchester and Liverpool.

this film will leave a lasting impression with audiences around the world

eOne’s Chief Content Officer Mark Gordon.

Entertainment One (eOne) finances the project with Screen Yorkshire and Melissa Shiyu Zuo through her company GS Media. eOne will directly distribute the feature film in Canada, UK, Australia/New Zealand, Germany, Benelux and Spain. Sierra/Affinity will represent all other international territories outside of the US.

Screen Yorkshire invested in Official Secrets through its Yorkshire Content Fund, which aims to grow the screen industries in the region. Credits include Hope Gap, Ackley Bridge, Fighting For A City, Yardie, Ghost Stories, Dad’s Army, Swallows and Amazons, Testament of Youth, National Treasure and Peaky Blinders.

Case Study: How we supported the production


September 6th 2018

Official Secrets

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