Sylvia (2003) - Synopsis
Academy Award winner Gwyneth Paltrow stars in Sylvia as legendary American author and poet Sylvia Plath, opposite Daniel Craig as British Poet Laureate Edward (Ted) Hughes. Sylvia explores the source of creative genius, and love in all its passion. Ted and Sylvia were a sensual, volatile, and brilliant married couple who emerged as two of the most influential writers of the 20th century.
The film begins in 1956. Sylvia is in England on a Fulbright Scholarship when she meets Ted. The attraction is immediate and mutual. It is a meeting not only of the minds, but of an intense physicality as well. Within four months, they are married. When her studies are completed, Sylvia is offered a teaching post back in America. She accepts, and the couple relocates. A working wife, Sylvia must also tend to her unique voice or risk losing it. The newly published Ted attracts the attention of the literary world, along with the attentions of admiring women. Returning to England in late 1959, Sylvia and Ted attempt to renew their commitment, first with the birth of one child and then another. But as the marriage frays anew and Ted’s literary stature overshadows her own, Sylvia’s creative impulses surge. She funnels her fury and passion into her work, and her writing begins to flow forth in unstoppable bursts. I really feel like God is speaking through me, she exults. Her destiny and Ted’s, inextricably intertwined with hers is at hand
Sylvia is directed by Christine Jeffs, the New Zealand filmmaker whose first feature, Rain, enjoyed great acclaim at its World Premiere in the Directors Fortnight at the 2001 Cannes International Film Festival. Concurrent with its screening at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, Ms. Jeffs was named one of Daily Variety’s 10 Directors to Watch. Sylvia is written by John Brownlow and produced by Alison Owen (Academy Award nominee for Elizabeth).
A Focus Features presentation in association with BBC Films, Capitol Films, and U.K. Film Council of a Ruby Films production. Gwyneth Paltrow, Daniel Craig. Sylvia. Jared Harris, Blythe Danner, Michael Gambon. Costume Designer, Sandy Powell. Composer, Gabriel Yared. Editor, Tariq Anwar. Production Designer, Maria Djurkovic. Director of Photography, John Toon. Co-Producer, Neris Thomas. Executive Producers, David M. Thompson, Tracey Scoffield, Robert Jones. Executive Producers, Jane Barclay & Sharon Harel. Screenplay by John Brownlow. Produced by Alison Owen. Directed by Christine Jeffs.