'Red Joan': Release date, plot, cast, trailers, news, and everything you need to know about this spy drama

'Red Joan': Release date, plot, cast, trailers, news, and everything you need to know about  this spy drama

'Red Joan' is a film based on a true story about KGB's longest-serving British spy Joan Stanley. The film had its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2018 and following this, IFC Films bought the US distribution rights to the film. The film is based on a novel of the same name authored by Jennie Rooney, which was inspired by Melita Norwood's life. 

Release date: 

'Red Joan' is slated to release in the US and UK on April 19. 


Starring Judi Dench as the older Joan Stanley, the film is set in the present where Joan is taken into custody by a group of officials who charge her for '27 breaches of the official secrets act'. Joan, who is a mother now is shocked about the ongoings and when her son arrives and tries to confirm if all of this was a joke, she tells her story. She narrates a tale from the past - circa 1938 when she entered Cambridge University. She specialized in theoretical physics and joined as a personal assistant to a researcher. From this to nuclear bombing in Hiroshima, Joan is somehow related and this shocks her son. Why she did what she did forms the crux of the film. 



Judi Dench as older Joan Stanley

Judi Dench in 'Red Joan' (Source: IMDb)

Judi Dench plays the role of older Joan Stanley who gets arrested by the officials after they uncover the truth about what she did during her days in Cambridge University as a specialist in theoretical physics. She is influenced politically to make certain decisions by her lover and that haunts her for the rest of her life. 

Sophie Cookson as younger Joan Stanley

Sophie Cookson as young Joan Stanley in 'Red Joan'. (Source: IMDb)

Sophie Cookson plays the younger Joan Stanley as the plot switches between past and present. She appears in the flashbacks about what really happened in 1938. She joins a research center as one of the researcher's personal assistants and is fascinated by her boss' ideas. 

Stephen Campbell Moore as Max Davis

Stephen Campbell Moore plays the role of Max Davis in 'Red Joan'. (Source: Getty Images)

Stephen as Max is a charming professor who runs a secret laboratory which aims to keep up with American experiments on building a war-ending bomb. Joan who joins as an assistant becomes his confidante and then lover. It is secrets from this facility that she passes on to her Russian handler at the insistence of Leo. 

Tom Hughes as Leo

Actor Tom Hughes plays the role of Leo in 'Red Joan'. (Source: Getty Images)

Tom Hughes plays the role of Leo, who is Joan's roommate's cousin and is a German Jew as well as a committed communist. Joan falls hard for him and ends up being influenced by him to become a communist herself. 


The film is directed by Trevor Nunn and written by Lindsay Shapero. Nunn is famous for directing stage plays and has received Tony Awards for 'Cats' and 'Les Misérables'.


The trailer of 'Red Joan' shows Judi Dench as Joan try to explain to her barrister son why she did what she did and we see Sophie Cookson as young Joan explore love for the first time through Leo and Max. We see her struggle between passing secret details about the nuclear atomic research while she works with Max, a physics professor and her love. 


If you like this, you'll love:

Atomic Blonde', 'Kingsman: The Golden Circle', 'The Imitation Game'.

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