Wild Nights With Emily is the story of the secret life of Emily Dickinson (played by Molly Shannon). The poet’s persona, popularized since her death, is that of a reclusive spinster—a delicate wallflower, too sensitive for this world. This film explores the vivacious, irreverent side of her that was covered up for many years and recently revealed— most notably Emily’s lifelong romance with another woman, Susan Dickinson, the wife of Emily’s brother. After Emily died, the mistress of Emily’s brother would publish Emily’s poems. A fierce rivalry between Emily’s beloved and her brother’s mistress in making known the work of this great poet is also the story of two sets of passionate, illicit lovers in a mysterious struggle for a place in history.
Short Before the Feature: I See Through You // Lael Rogers :: A dreamy, musical landscape hides mysterious secrets beneath the surface.
Madeleine Olnek is a a New York City based playwright and
filmmaker. She was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship for her third feature film, Wild Nights With Emily, which premiered at SXSW 2018.
Her debut feature Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same premiered at Sundance 2011 and screened at MoMA and The Viennale. Nominated for a Gotham award, it had theatrical runs in LA and NYC.
Her second feature The Foxy Merkins, included screenings at Sundance 2014, BAM Cinemafest, Lincoln Center, and an NYC theatrical run at IFP. The film had its international premiere at the Moscow Film Festival, and was nominated for an Independent Spirit award.