The feature has been described by Deadline as a “grounded sci-fi love story,” in a world where a test measures whether couples are truly in love. To help couples succeed, love institutes have opened to guide them. Anna (Buckley) is skeptical of the positive result she’s received with her longtime partner, so she starts working in a love institute as an assistant to Trevor (Ahmed), a mysterious, dedicated instructor.
Nikou made his directorial debut with the pandemic film Apples in 2020. He had previously worked with the likes of Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth) and Richard Linklater (Before Midnight) as assistant director. The script for Fingernails was written by Nikou with Sam Steiner and Apples co-writer Stavros Raptis.
Cate Blanchett’s production company Dirty Films is producing the film alongside financier FilmNation Entertainment. Dirty Films also produced Apples. Jerome Duboz serves as executive producer on the projects.
Jessie Buckley recently received an Oscar nomination for her performance in Maggie Gyllenhaal’s The Lost Daughter. She’s know for her roles in Wild Rose as well as Charlie Kaufman’s I’m Thinking Of Ending Things. Fingernails joins a slate of exciting upcoming projects for Buckley, as she’s also in Alex Garland’s Men which is set for a May 20 release. Her other forthcoming projects include Women Talking alongside Frances McDormand, Rooney Mara, and Claire Foy as well as Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s directorial debut Hot Milk.
Ahmed won an Oscar in 2020 for his short film The Long Goodbye, directed by Aneil Karia. The OA actor is known for his roles in Venom and Sound Of Metal. He’s recently been cast as Hamlet in a modern adaptation written by Michael Lesslie for Netflix, as well as the sci-fi feature Exit West.