In Development: Kamila Dydyna’s drama Debutante, looking inside the world of Jehovah’s Witnesses
Dydyna (Testimony, The Betrayal) is currently working on a new short
drama Debutante. The film is set in contemporary Dublin, inside the
world of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Ireland, an organisation promoting secularism and ethical thinking, is the
patron of the film. Debutante is geared towards compassion, not hatred or
scandal, but it strongly condemns the inhuman practice of shunning and
overbearing religious control among Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Irish teenager Meg has loving sex with her boyfriend. What follows is not an unplanned pregnancy but a judicial committee hearing with three elders of her congregation. They dissect her first sexual experience to its very bones, challenging her faith and her identity as a Jehovah’s Witness.
The film’s title refers to the French origin of
the word – “stepping out into the world for the first time” or
being a beginner, a person that begins life as an adult.
The film will be shot by Barry Doyle (Rising, I Can’t Sleep). Other crew members
include 1st AD Niall Owens (Michael Inside), script supervisor Fiona
Lanham (Rosie, Taken Down), Costume Designer Gwen Jeffares-Hourie (Gridlock, Five Letters to the Stranger Who Will Dissect My Brain) and MUA Edwina Kelly (Calm With Horses, Black ’47).
If you’d like to support the production, you can do so here.
Debutante was recently featured in the Friendly
Atheist. For more information about Kamila Dydyna’s experience growing up as
a Jehovah’s Witness, check out this interview.