Meyjes returns home for The Dinner adaptation
by Boyd van Hoeij
29/06/2012 - Dutch screenwriter and occasional director Menno Meyjes (photo) will return to the Netherlands for an adaptation of The Dinner, the bestselling novel by Dutch writer Herman Koch.
Meyjes wrote the screenplay for Spielberg’s The Color Purple, for which he was nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, and also collaborated with Spielberg and George Lucas on the screenplay of the hugely successful Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
Meyjes, who was born in the Netherlands but studied in San Francisco, has also directed several films, including Max with John Cusack and Manolete with Penélope Cruz and Adrian Brody.
For his first-ever Dutch project, Meyjes will be working with renowned local producer Reinout Oerlemans, whose production company Eyeworks Film & TV Drama has been responsible for some of the most successful novel adaptations in recent Dutch cinema, including Antoinette Beumer’s The Happy Housewife [trailer] and Stricken, directed by Oerlemans himself.
Eyeworks will partner with regular local co-production partner Inspire Pictures for the feature, which will be exective produced by Meyjes and US producer Cotty Chubb.
Oerlemans commented on the acquisition of the adaptation rights and the announcement of the director: “Together with Menno Meyjes, who besides the screenplay will also handle directorial duties, we will do everything we can to continue the success of The Dinner as it transitions to the big screen.
Koch’s novel is about two couples that are having dinner at a restaurant as they chat about little niceties to avoid the elephant in the room: talking about their children.
The bestseller has sold more than 500,000 copies in the Low Countries alone, and has been translated into several languages. An English version will hit US and UK bookstores in August.
Benelux Films Distributors Belgium (BFD) will release the film in 2013.