When the trailer for White Bird: A Wonder Story, the spin-off sequel/prequel film to Stephen Chbosky’s 2017 film Wonder was released last year, it expanded the world of R.J. Palacio‘s original novel. Though it was initially set to release in 2022, Lionsgate pushed the release date back, and has now announced that it will instead hit theaters this August.
With Wonder making $305 million in worldwide box office and Palacio’s having sold more than 16 million copies of his books with editions published in 47 different languages, the companion film to the global hit will certainly draw a crowd to theaters this August. White Bird follows the story of the main antagonist in Wonder, Julian (Bryce Gheisar, Walk the Prank), as he struggles to find belonging after he was expelled from his last school for bullying Auggie Pullman (Jacob Tremblay, Room and Before I Wake).
In an attempt to help him see the world differently, Julian’s grandmother (played by veteran actress Helen Mirren) reveals her own story of courage. When she was a young girl in Nazi-occupied France, a classmate (Orlando Schwerdt, Children of the Corn) and his family sheltered her from mortal danger. The two discover first love in a magical world of their own creation while the boy’s mother (Gillian Anderson, Sex Education and The X Files) risks it all to keep her safe.
Rounding out the White Bird cast are Olivia Ross (The Old Guard), Ariella Glaser (Radioactive), and Ishai Golan (Mindbender). A Man Called Otto director Marc Forster (Finding Neverland, Christopher Robin) helmed the film based on a script penned by screenwriter Mark Bomback. Following the themes of the first movie, White Bird is another uplifting tale of how one act of kindness can live on forever. In fact, Lionsgate and Participant are collaborating with the USC Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education to create educational programming built around the film.
White Bird producers include Todd Lieberman for Mandeville Films and David Hoberman, Palacio is also a producer for White Bird alongside Todd Lieberman for Mandeville Films and David Hoberman. The film is also executive produced by Jeff Skoll for Participant, Alexander Young for Mandeville Films and Renée Wolfe for 2DUX2. Robert Kessel, Kevan Van Thompson and Mark Bomback are also executive producers.
White Bird: A Wonder Story hits select theaters August 18 before its wide release on August 25.