Rick Ostermann to tell the story of the wolf children
by Bénédicte Prot
04/07/2012 - After having assisted many directors (notably Maggie Peren for the popular Special Escort [trailer] and Matthias Glasner for Mercy [trailer, film focus], in competition at the last Berlinale), Rick Ostermann (photo) is now making his first feature Wolfskinder. Shooting kicked off last week in Lithuania and will continue throughout the month of July.
The screenplay, written by Ostermann, is based on the tragedy of the "Wolfskinder", or wolf children, German war orphans from East Prussia left to fend for themselves and survive on their own, while hiding from the occupying Soviet forces, after the Second World War. Many travelled to Lithuania where farmers secretly employed them in exchange for food.
Here, Ostermann focuses on 14-year-old Hans who is left in charge of his little brother after his mother dies of hunger. But the two orphans soon become separated when they run away from Soviet soldiers. Now, on top of fighting for his survival in the most difficult of conditions, alone or with other children, Hans must also find his little brother.
For the two main adult roles, Ostermann has chosen actors with whom he has previously worked as an assistant director: Jördis Triebel (This Is Love [trailer], on which Ostermann worked) who is to play the mother, and famous actor Jürgen Vogel who not only recently worked with the director (on the set of Mercy) but also knows Triebel well as he acted with her in the film that revealed her talent, Emma’s Bliss [trailer] (2006). Leah Striker has been entrusted with the film’s cinematography. She has only ever had the same role for one other feature, but has previously assisted the chief operators of films such as Resident Evil, The Perfume [trailer], or even Inglourious Basterds [trailer].
Wolfskinder is produced by Rüdiger Heinze and Stefan Sporbert for Zum Goldenen Lamm Filmproduktion, in collaboration with television channels HessischenRundfunk and ARTE, and with the support of the FFA, the MFG Medien- und Filmgesellschaft Baden-Württemberg, and the Hessische Filmförderung regional fund.
(Translated from French)