TorinoFilmLab - Training, development, Funding



Anna Reeves

Switzerland, Denmark


A transmedia property that explores immortality and the ethical ambiguities of emerging bio and nano technologies. It begins in 986 AD in the Arctic Circle and moves into the near future before the characters
go global. I
t tells story of the first transhumans, or ‘Midnights’, so called, because they come out of the Land of the Midnight Sun and they do not sleep. They are also infertile. Their major Achilles tendon, however, is memory.
They have developed complicated political structures to ensure their survival. The Midnights were once human beings but have now become considered as ‘Others’ by the rest of mankind and are greatly feared. In
turn the Midnights fear persecution, something, which has plagued theirhistory. They are not super-heroes because they can be killed. They have weaknesses.

There are at least 8 potential story engines.
The feature film is a fugitive thriller set in the near future about the first person in a millennium to become a Midnight.
The television series is an eco-thriller/crime story set in the present and centred around a shipping company and a biotech company based in Copenhagen.
The novel unfolds over three time periods/centuries and is about the mafia like structure of the Midnights, their family loyalties and betrayals. The game is driven by the overarching theme of the transmedia property, which is ‘trust’, and is centred around virtual Midnights who live forever in a virtual world but who were born out of the minds of real Midnights and want to get back into their real bodies.


Creating a cross-platform story-world is like curating a collage of ideas
and then looking for the emotional touchpoints that will draw an
audience to your property and make them wish to interact with it. What
excites me is that we don’t have to choose between the physical and
virtual experiences but can have both. I came to the Writers’ Room with
a feature script and a mythology and I have found that the freedom
of not locking in the medium first up has allowed our group to often
surprise ourselves when discussing which platform would suit whichever
branch of the story-world. I believe that technology will enable us to do
so many exciting things very soon and that storytellers must get out of
their comfort zones to keep apace with New Tech.

The world is at a bridge into a new world with many challenges from
emerging technologies such a bio and nanotech and the development
of new weapons systems. How we may respond to a greatly increased
lifespan is full of ethical ambiguities. It is wrong to think that the future
rests solely in the hands of scientists and technologists; storytellers have
a huge responsibility to encourage awareness, not through lecturing
but through providing emotional journeys for others to add to. My
story-world is all about asking: how far can we stretch ourselves and
still remain human? It is about our insatiable curiosity and the pros and
cons of ‘progress’. I am not so into dystopian worlds with deep space
operatics, I want worlds that feel very real.

The team are exploring ways to draw audiences to the Midnights’
world in physical, interactive ways. We also draw upon craft-based
activities, such as ceramics and textiles and construction. The Midnights
communicate in coded ways that operate purely under the radar of
technology, to insure that it is difficult to crack. These codes draw upon
age-old techniques, mostly hand-made objects. Sometimes these are
linked to hunting, fishing, gardening.
Other clues are centred around their slang which mostly reflects English
as it was spoken around the late 18th century but many other words go
back to their Norse roots. I have invented a lexicon, which will continue
to be added to as the cross-platform property evolves. For instance,
a “Fog-lighter” is somebody who assists a Midnight in rebooting his or
her memory. These elements will be part of the online universe for the

The future is sleepless.
Anna Reeves

Scriptwriter, Film Director

production notes

directed by
Anna Reeves