Will Sharpe directed The Electrical Life of Louis Wain, a 2021 British biopic with a touch of whimsy and humor, based on a screenplay by Simon Stephenson and Sharpe.

The film stars Benedict Cumberbatch, as the eccentric artist Louis Wain, Claire Foy, Andrea Riseborough and Toby Jones.

The Electrical Life of Louis Wain world premiered at the 2021  Telluride Film Fest, and had limited theatrical release in October, before streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

In 1881, a year after his father’s death, Louis Wain, the only male and eldest of the Wain family, becomes the primary breadwinner. He supports five sisters and mother working as an illustrator for The Illustrated London News under editor Sir William Ingram. Ingram offers him a full-time job, but Wain declines in order to try his hand at composing music and writing, but neither venture is successful.

Louis hires Emily Richardson to be the governess for his sisters. The two become instantly attracted to each other, much to the dismay of the family.

Guided by Emily’s spirit, and with his journal and Emily’s rock in his arms, Louis goes out to the painted countryside, where Emily told him that he would find her there.

Simon Stephenson’s original script was selected for the Britlist of the UK’s hottest unproduced scripts in 2014.

Well-acted by the two leads, the film adds a dash of whimsy and humor to the standard biopic formula.

Cast