Nic Balthazar explores the world of stand-up comedy with Say Something Funny
by Aurore Engelen
- In Say Something Funny, Nic Balthazar and Peter Van Den Begin ask some existential questions: how can you make people laugh when you’re depressed?
Nic Balthazar has just started filming his third feature film, Say Something Funny [+see also:
film profile]. In his first two films, Balthazar, who was known as a television and radio presenter, tackled major medico-social issues, based on true stories. Ben X [+see also:
interview: Nic Balthazar
interview: Peter Bouckaert
film profile], the hero in his first film, a young artist suffering from Asperger syndrome, sought refuge in the unreality of online video games to escape from the harsh reality of his everyday life. In Time of my Life [+see also:
film profile], he followed the story of Mario Verstraete, a multiple sclerosis patient at the end of his life fighting to make euthanasia legal in Belgium.
In Say Something Funny, Nic Balthazar focuses on more personal issues. We follow the dithering Peter Van Den Begin (who has just finished filming Kebab Royal [+see also:
interview: Jessica Woodworth, Peter Br…
film profile] by Brosens and Woodworth, in which he plays the King of Belgium no less) who plays a troubled stand-up comedian on the verge of burnout, faced with existential issues exacerbated by the emergence of a young talented competitor. By his side are well-known comedians accustomed to bringing the house down like Barbara Sarafian (Vincent and the End of the World, Bullhead [+see also:
interview: Bart Van Langendonck
interview: Michaël R. Roskam
film profile], Moscow, Belgium [+see also:
film profile]), as well as stand-up comedians making their big-screen debut.
Written and put together by Nic Balthazar, Say Something Funny is being produced by Peter Bouckaert for Eyeworks Film & TV Drama and co-produced by Entre Chien et Loup, Eyeworks Pays-Bas and SCIO Productions, with the support of the Flanders Audiovisual Fund, Screen Flanders, the CCA and the Dutch Film Fund. Filming, which has just started, is due to be concluded on 5 October 2015. Kinepolis Film Distribution is set to release the film in autumn 2016.
(Translated from French)
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