The fictional Isle of Thule allows the show to create its own paranormal
much like the island in LOST, while drawing tonal inspiration from movies like The WICKER MAN
and SHUTTER ISLAND to isolate the characters in a paranormal environment they can’t escape.
GOTHIC FAMILY HORROR:
The dark and fallible side of the elite has long been a staple of
horror, from the Usher family in Poe’s FALL OF THE HOUSE OF USHER to old European families
of Washington Irving’s THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HORROR. We see this today in shows like BIG
LITTLE LIES and THE STAIRCASE.
Robert Fremont has walked with a malevolent shadow version of himself for his entire life. Robert and his younger brother Jake come from old money. As children they lived a lavish east coast lifestyle, but Robert was different from Jake - a shadow figure which the boys call Shadow Robert, always appeared in times of stress and need. As teenagers, they inherit the family wealth after a great fire, set by shadow Robert, killed their parents. Now in his fifties, Robert lives in Austin, Texas where, he and Jake are members of the state’s
financial elite. A lifetime of questionable judgement has rendered Robert deferential to Jake. The latest of Robert’s mistakes finds him the subject of an investigation into fraud by an upstart
reporter, Judy Lafferty - she’s out to bring Robert and the Fremont company to its knees.
Judy’s investigation widens when Robert’s house burns down, tragically killing his wife and two young daughters. While Robert has a watertight alibi, his grieving sister-in-law Linda suspects
Robert of murder. With Judy’s investigation ratcheting up, Robert’s life is collapsing. To save their company, Jake places Robert on indefinite gardening leave, becoming the sacrificial lamb and social pariah.
Judy’s obsession with Robert is putting a strain on her personal and professional life - it’s more than a story. Unbeknown to his wife, Robert’s brother-in-law and realtor, Clarke, aids Robert to escape the heat, hastily arranging a house purchase on the remote and mysterious Alaskan island of Thule.
Arriving on Thule, Robert has never been more alone. The island is barren and bleak, a former mining community who’s native Yu’pik residents have been left in financial hardship. Robert finds friendship in local Yu’pik woman Yarri. Yarri is fascinated by the arrival of a stranger. Yarri’s father and Sheriff, Carl, is less enthused by the newcomer, especially when the death count in the small island community soars. With Robert missing, Judy widens her investigation, turning up more deaths linked to the Fremont brothers’ past. On the island, Robert learns of the island’s strange folklore, one the Yu’pik people distance
themselves from. Whatever lurks in the island’s shadows, it wants Robert, and perhaps has always had him. The only light left in Robert’s life is Yarri; she’s full of good, a person adored by the community, a shining light in this bleak place - the kind of light that Shadow Robert will not tolerate.
LOGLINE: A wealthy financier suspected of murdering his family is plagued by a malevolent
figure, and a mounting body count, whilst seeking solitude and escape on the mysterious Isle of
THE SHADOW FIGURE / SHADOW ROBERT: The wealthy are inherently plagued by evil
manifestations and allegories of acts committed to acquire their wealth. On The Isle of Thule
a ticking-clock crime thriller that portrays a dark, malevolent force as the perpetrator of a
history of violence.
On The Isle of Thule is a tense and dark paranormal thriller with a widespread family mystery
affecting a diverse array of characters, including the seldom represented Yu’pik community of
LOCATIONS AND TONE
The locations will be characters in their own right – distinct and transportive. THE ISLE OF THULE is a small island situated in the Bering Sea, 50 miles from the Alaskan mainland. The island has a population of 2,000, largely Indigenous Yu’pik people with a few
non-Indigenous fishermen. The island is rugged with steep cliffs on all sides save for one icefree bay which serves as a harbor and entry point to the island’s only town, Thule. The island has a mountainous center, with Cracktooth Mountain at the peak. The land is largely windburnt
scrub with a single forest at the mountain’s base. The island was unsuccessfully mined in the 1950s. The loss of the mine caused mass unemployment among the local community, leaving the island largely dependent on fishing. TOWN OF THULE is the only settlement on the island, home to almost every resident. Cardiff Bay houses the only harbor and is the center of the fishing industry. The town consists of small one- and two-storey, low-income, wooden houses and basic amenities including The Last Resort Bar and Grill and The Outpost General Store. THE THULE FARMHOUSE sits deep in the forest in the center of the island. The colonial revival building is completely out of place, not only on the island, but on the west coast. It was built by a mysterious industrialist who mined the island in the 1950s for an unknown substance. Since the mine closed in the 1960s, the farmhouse has sat largely empty, changing hands sporadically
and often home to squatters. Now home to Robert Fremont, the house contains secrets of the miner’s true intentions, a mystery linked to Shadow Robert. THE FREEMONT HOMETOWN is an almost abandoned, former industrial, east coast rust- belt town in New York (state). Most of the homes are dilapidated or overgrown. Several houses and properties were destroyed during the large fire which killed Robert and Jake’s parents. The few remaining residents are reluctant to talk about the Fremonts, as if Robert and Jake’s family history has been erased.
TONE The visual style and tone will complement the bleakness and foreboding landscape of the island – cold and harsh.
fifties, is a likeable, affable, but cowardly man. Born into wealth,
Robert was a troubled child, haunted by a figure that his brother, Jake, calls SHADOW ROBERT. Whenever Robert is threatened, Shadow Robert appears to protect him, even going as far as murdering his parents and delivering Robert and Jake the family fortune. Robert has a past
littered with death; anyone who gets too close to him dies at the hands of Shadow Robert. Now on the run from an intrepid journalist, Robert arrives on the Isle of Thule where a local girl, Yaari, becomes the first true friend he’s ever had. The island is no sanctuary though, it’s home to the force behind Shadow Robert, a force that has directed Robert to this very place and time to become flesh and turn Robert to shadow.
FANTASY CASTING: HENRY THOMAS
twenty-three, is a vivacious freelance journalist out to land her first cover
story with a deep investigation into fraud at Fremont Financial. That investigation leads her further into the life of Robert Fremont, who she suspects of the multiple murder of his wife and children. With the help of Robert’s sister-in-law Linda, Judy travels to Robert and Jake’s hometown to dig into the family’s history, discovering a trail of death and destruction, and worse, the presence of malevolent force, Shadow Robert.
FANTASY CASTING: ZENDAYA
thirty-eight, is a realtor who is married to Linda. Their dying marriage is
worsened by Clarke’s close friendship to Robert. Clarke is besotted with the Fremont brothers’
old-money standing and yearns to be accepted into society’s upper echelon. When Robert
needs to leave town after the mysterious death of his wife Maria and their children, Clarke
facilitates the move behind Linda’s back.
FANTASY CASTING: JEFFERY DONOVAN
forty-five, is Robert’s younger and more astute brother. He takes over full
leadership of Fremont Financial after Robert is put on indefinite leave. Jake is aware of Shadow Robert’s existence and that it killed his parents, much to Jake’s advantage. Now he tries to forget Shadow Robert’s existence, until it returns. It’s in Jake’s best interest to coverup his and
Robert’s past, including Shadow Robert, putting him on a collision course with Judy and Linda.
FANTASY CASTING: JEREMY STRONG
twenty-one, is a Yu’pik native of the Isle of Thule. She lives in the town of
Thule with her father and grandparents. Vibrant if somewhat naive, she’s adored by the community and destined to become an island leader. The arrival of Robert, an outsider on the island, fascinates her. Against her father’s wishes, Yaari befriends Robert, helping him to fix-up his
decrepit island house and investigate the island’s dark mystery.
FANTASY CASTING: ANNA LAMBE
thirty-five., is the sister of Robert’s deceased wife, Maria. Linda suspects that
the fire that killed her sister and nieces was set by Robert. She aids Judy with her investigation,
providing financial support, however, her relationship with Judy becomes fraught when Judy
implicates Maria in Robert’s fraud case.
FANTASY CASTING: JULIE GONZALO
forty, is a detective at the Austin PD. He’s alternative in almost every
way, his body covered head to toe in tattoos, and is considered an outsider by his peers. Judy convinces Arbor becomes convinced of Robert’s guilt, however, her reckless approach causes friction between them. Arbor’s involvement with Judy puts him under immense pressure from Jake Fremont.
FANTASY CASTING: COLIN FARRELL
fifty, is Yaari’s father and part-time, voluntary, sheriff of Thule. He
Robert into the community before until deaths hit the Yu’pik community. He suspects Robert’s
involvement, driving a wedge between him and Yarri.
FANTASY CASTING: ERIC SCHWEIG
fifty, is Editor-in-Chief at the Austin Sentinel. She is Judy’s superior and lover. Judy’s obsession with Robert eventually causes Amy to cut all ties, personal and professional.
FANTASY CASTING: MAGGIE Q
The Isle of Thule is written by award winning Canadian writer James Howells who is represented by Brant Rose Talent Agency in Los Angeles. James's screenplays are ranked in the top 1% of 80,000 scripts by US script aggregator website Coverfly. He has won fourteen major screenplay honors including best one hour television at Nantucket Film Festival 2021 (previous winners include Shia Labeouf).