Written and Directed by Robbi Stevens
Produced by Abbie Elliott
Starring Esme Pellegrini
‘Set in London and inspired by real-life events, The Nightingale follows Grace, a second-year university student on her reckless and dangerous path through the different stages of PTSD. With unflinching honesty, the film explores the lasting impact of sexual assault and the courage it takes to overcome it’.
In a society that often silences survivors, The Nightingale amplifies the voices that demand to be heard.
‘The Nightingale’ is a deeply moving and emotionally charged film that delves into the harrowing journey of Grace, a survivor of sexual assault, as she navigates the difficult path to recovery over the course of a year. The story we tell is tragic, yet sadly representative of the experiences faced by 1 in 4 women, 1 in 6 children and I in 18 men (Rape Crisis, 2022), highlighting the alarming normalization and acceptance of rape and sexual assault in our society.
Our film aims to shatter the complacency surrounding sexual violence by bringing attention to its prevalence and the lasting impact it has on victims. We refuse to accept a society where violence against women and girls is deemed baseline, and where the burden of preventing assault falls solely on women. Through the raw power of storytelling, we want audiences to witness and truly comprehend the immense struggles victims endure long after the act of violence.
‘The Nightingale’ is not intended to focus on the perpetrator but rather on the strength and resilience of the survivors as they overcome adversity. It is crucial to shift the narrative away from victim-blaming (‘cover your drink, don’t go home alone, stop wearing short skirts) and instead foster a collective responsibility to address this societal problem.
Although the primary focus of this film is centred on a woman’s experience, we believe it is essential to recognise the importance of Michael’s character, who is a complete support for Grace. He symbolizes men’s crucial contribution in creating a safer environment for everyone.
For me as writer and director of ‘The Nightingale’ it is not just a film I wanted to make, it is a film I felt compelled to make. It is a call to action, a plea for understanding and an opportunity to drive meaningful change.