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PRODUCTION Czech Republic / Netherlands / Latvia

Czech director Michal Hogenauer readying his debut feature, Outside


- The film, shot in Latvia with a predominantly Dutch cast, revolves around systematic manipulation inspired by a real-life German sect

Czech director Michal Hogenauer readying his debut feature, Outside
Director Michal Hogenauer on the set of Outside (© Negativ Film Production)

The latest Les Arcs Film Festival Work-in-Progress selection (see the news) includes the Czech project Outside among its 2017 line-up. Outside is the first feature-length directorial outing by Michal Hogenauer, whose graduate film, Tambylles, was introduced in the Cannes Cinéfondation selection in 2012. The story, written by the director and Jakub Felcman, is based on true events revolving around a German sect that attempted to raise thousands of “perfect” children by using physical punishment.

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Outside follows Mia, portrayed by Czech actress Eliška Krenková (Family Film [+see also:
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, the TV series Borgia), a young Czech au pair who starts to work for a wealthy family (Monic Hendrickx and Roeland Fernhout). She takes care of their ten-year-old son Sebastian (Jacob Jutte) and has to abide by a set of strange rules. The synopsis continues: “As a result of manipulation by a radical family community, she begins to gradually and systematically disappear, and abandon her humanity and her relationships with the child entrusted to her.”

Principal photography wrapped at the beginning of November. The international crew helmed by Hogenauer shot on location in Riga, with Gregg Tellusa behind the camera.  The post-production works are currently under way in Prague, while the final cut is expected to be finished in May 2018. Outside has been developed with the support of Creative Europe – MEDIA Development since 2013 and was successfully presented at the Berlinale Co-Production meetings in 2016. The project received a grant during the latest batch of support decisions by Eurimages.

Outside is an international co-production between the Czech Republic (Petr Oukropec and Pavel Strnad, for the Czech company Negativ), the Netherlands (Stienette Bosklopper and Lisette Kelder for Circe Films) and Latvia (Aija Berzina, of Tasse Film). The project also received support from the Czech Film Fund, the Netherlands Film Fund, the National Film Centre of Latvia, the Riga Film Fund and HBO Europe. The sales agent is currently under negotiation.

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