Netflix has announced its acquisition of the Aussie feature film Penguin Bloom, starring Naomi Watts, for several territories on three continents.

Penguin Bloom
Penguin Bloom: Naomi Watts as Sam Bloom, Andrew Lincoln as Cameron Bloom, Griffin Murray-Johnston as Noah Bloom, Felix Cameron as Rueben Bloom, & Abe Clifford-Barr as Oli Bloom — Photo: Joel Pratley / Netflix

Netflix has acquired Penguin Bloom in North America, the UK, France, and select countries in Asia.

Based on the book of the same name by Cameron Bloom and Bradley Trevor Greive, Penguin Bloom tells the amazing true story of renewal that occurred when a woman whose life seemed shattered found hope and purpose in her family’s love — and in a bird on its own journey of recovery.

The film’s cast includes two-time Academy Award® nominee Naomi Watts (21 Grams, The Impossible), BAFTA Awards nominee Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead, Love Actually), double Oscar® nominee Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook, Animal Kingdom), Rachel House (Hunt for the Wilderpeople), AACTA nominee Leeanna Walsman (Safe Harbour), Lisa Hensley (My Life Is Murder), and newcomers Griffin Murray-Johnston, Felix Cameron, and Abe Clifford-Barr.

In 2013, Samantha Bloom (Naomi Watts), her husband Cameron (Andrew Lincoln), and their three sons left Australia for a holiday in Thailand. While enjoying a view, Sam fell off of a rooftop due to what was later determined to be a rotted railing, breaking her vertebrae in two places. Paralyzed from the chest down, Sam — a lifelong outdoorswoman, surfer, and traveler — was unrecognizable to herself, and spent months in a depression that made her question who she could be in the world and in her own family.

A year later, her children brought home a wounded baby magpie they had found. Warily eyeing the black-and-white bird the kids affectionately named Penguin, Sam bonded with the household’s new member, beginning a process of emotional healing that surprised her husband and sons, her mother (Jacki Weaver), and herself.

Directed by Glendyn Ivin (The Cry), the film is written by Shaun Grant (Janet King) and Harry Cripps (The Letter for the King).

It is a production of Made Up Stories, Jam Tart Films, and Broadtalk, with Screen Australia Presents in association with Endeavor Content, Roadshow Films, and Create NSW. The Producers are Emma Cooper; Bruna Papandrea, Steve Hutensky, and Jodi Matterson of Made Up Stories; and Naomi Watts of Jam Tart Films, her production company. The Executive Producers are Sonia Amoroso, George Kekeli, Meryl Metni, Ricci Swart, Sam Bloom, Cameron Bloom, Bradley Trevor Greive, Joel Pearlman, Edwina Waddy, and Jill Bilcock.

Said the producers:

“We all fell in love with the life-affirming nature of Sam’s story and her undeniable spirit. The emotional journey she and her family go on after Penguin enters their lives is unforgettable. We have a wonderful partner in Netflix and we’re delighted they will be bringing Penguin Bloom to audiences around the world.”

Netflix will release Penguin Bloom on January 27, 2021.


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Penguin Bloom: Netflix Picks Up Naomi Watts Film for North America & Other Territories
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