Olias Barco shooting his new film, Polina, in Ukraine
by Aurore Engelen
- Belgian-based French director Olias Barco has chosen to shoot his new movie, a family adventure film verging on fantasy, in Ukraine
Polina follows the tracks of an 11-year-old girl who signs up for an adventure with a hint of magic to it, as she heads off in search of her parents, who have vanished. Olias Barco has jetted off to Ukraine to shoot this fantasy-adventure film aimed at families. While the title role has been entrusted to young Ukrainian actress Polina Pechenenko, the rest of the cast has a very European flavour: she is flanked by French and Belgian actors Audrey Marnay (The Monuments Men [+see also:
film profile], Bunker Paradise [+see also:
interview: Stefan Liberski
film profile]), Virgile Bramly (Inception), Wim Willaert (When the Sea Rises), Daniel Cohen (The Chef [+see also:
film profile]), Grégoire Colin and Virginie Ledoyen, as well as Lithuanian actress Severija Janusauskaite (The Star).
The DoP is renowned French cinematographer Thierry Arbogast, above all known for his numerous collaborations with Luc Besson, as well as with Jean-Paul Rappeneau (which incidentally earned him two César Awards), André Téchiné, Emir Kusturica, Patrice Leconte and Matthieu Kassovitz. His name currently features in the credits of two films that have just been released: Lolo [+see also:
interview: Julie Delpy, Dany Boon
film profile] by Julie Delpy and Families [+see also:
film profile], another film by Jean-Paul Rappeneau.
The film is a co-production between Belgium and France (Wild Tribe, the director’s own company), and Ukraine’s Films UA. It stands as a testament to the recent openness of Ukraine, which is seeking to attract new international co-productions to its soil by offering particularly favourable reception and hospitality conditions, mainly thanks to the existing infrastructure of the studios run by Films UA.
Polina is the third feature by Olias Barco, following Snowboarder (2003), an adventure film about extreme sports starring Grégoire Colin and Nicolas Duvauchelle, and Kill Me Please [+see also:
film profile] (2010), a dark comedy about assisted suicide, starring such big names as Bouli Lanners and Benoît Poelvoorde, which won the Grand Prix at the Rome Film Festival. We should also bear in mind the fact that his latest short film, Raconte-moi des salades, was selected in the official competition at the 2014 Berlinale.
(Translated from French)