Following a number of award-winning shorts, Belfast-born director/writer Colum Eastwood’s debut feature, BLACK MEDICINE explores two women’s polar opposite approaches to dealing with grief: one of them eluding it at all costs and the other so afraid of grief that she will do anything, even the most horrific of things, to avoid it.
Written and directed by Eastwood, and starring Antonia Campbell-Hughes (The Canal, Storage 24), Amybeth McNulty (“Anne with an E” and soon to star in “Stranger Things”) and Orla Brady (“American Horror Story”), this incredibly dark and tense thriller set in Belfast follows Jo (Campbell-Hughes), a prominent anaesthetist-turned-black-market-doctor who makes ends met by patching up gangsters and performing back room abortions. After saving a young man’s life, she gets introduced to some new, highly wealthy, and secretive clients but this new business relationship inadvertently spirals out of control, leaving her to face a stark choice when her ruthless employers ask her to do something beyond even her skewed moral compass.
With Black Medicine out now on digital platforms, SCREAM sat down with Eastwood and Campbell-Hughes to discuss the shocking realities that inspired the script, how they ensured all the medical scenes would be portrayed as effectively as possible on screen and Campbell-Hughes hinted at what we can expect from her next project, It Is In Us All, a film she wrote, directed and stars in alongside Cosmo Jarvis, Calm With Horses.
Words: Howard Gorman