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INDUSTRY / MARKET France / Germany

22 titles to be showcased at the Franco-German Film Meeting

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- Projects by Sylvie Verheyde, Robert Schwentke, Faouzi Bensaïdi, Wissam Charaf, Berni Goldblat and Cédric Ido will be showcased at the co-production market event in Mulhouse on 26 and 27 November

22 titles to be showcased at the Franco-German Film Meeting
Director Sylvie Verheyde, whose project 1986 has been selected

220 professionals will descend on Mulhouse tomorrow for the 17th Franco-German Film Meeting (26 and 27 November). Organised by UniFrance, German Films and the Académie Franco-Allemande du Cinéma (presided by Marie Masmonteil, producer at Elzévir Films), in partnership with the CNC and FFA, the event will host debates on topics impacting the industry on both sides of the Rhine (an analysis of French and German audiences and the strategies in place to better attract them, the growth of SVoD platforms and their relation to independent producers, equality in cinema with the “50/50 for 2020” collectives in France and ProQuote in Germany) but also a co-production market with 22 projects to be showcased.

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One of the most notable of the 12 French projects to be presented is 1986, by Sylvie Verheyde, produced by Atelier de Production and set to be shot next spring. It will be the filmmaker’s 7th feature after, among other titles, Un Frère... (Directors’ Fortnight 1997), Stella [+see also:
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(Giornate degli Autori in Venice in 2008), Confessions of a Child of the Century [+see also:
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(Un Certain Regard in Cannes in 2012) and Madame Claude (in post-production – read the news). Written by the director together with William Wayolle, the script centres on Stella who is set to graduate high school at the end of the school year. But she couldn’t care less! This year, she has discovered night clubs, the "Bains Douches", and a whole era: the 1980s in Paris and the city’s wild nights. Stella loves to dance, and it’s what she does best. Besides, all her girlfriends have become stupid: all they do is revise their lessons. On top of that, her father has gone with another woman, a customer from the coffee shop, taking all the money from the till with him but leaving the shop’s debts behind… Stella’s mother is depressed. And then, there is André. He is handsome, black and mysterious. He dances like a god. And he is much more fun than philosophy lessons… In any case, that’s the way Stella perceives him. This year will determine her entire life. She pretends not to think about it, but she knows it…


Of note among the nine German projects is the historical drama Seneca – On The Creation of Earthquakes by Robert Schwentke. After a career as director of Hollywood blockbusters (among others, the second and third films from the Divergent series), the filmmaker returned to his country of origin with The Captain [+see also:
film review
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interview: Robert Schwentke
film profile
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(revealed in Toronto in 2017 before winning the Special Jury Prize for Best Cinematography in San Sebastián). His new project, based on a script he wrote together with Frieder Schlaich, is a parable about the dangers of excessive power and totalitarian systems. The film is a psychodrama centred on an opportunistic collaborator who, in exchange for immeasurable wealth, helps the tyrant Nero gain legitimacy… Produced by Filmgalerie 451, Seneca – On The Creation of Earthquakes, is set to be shot in Ouarzazate, in Morocco, in November and December 2020, and already benefits from the support of Medienboard Berlin Brandenburg, MFG Filmförderung Baden Württemberg, BKM Filmförderung, ZDF/Arte and Weltkino (for distribution in Germany).

French projects also include Deserts (original title: Déserts), written and set to be directed by Faouzi Bensaïdi (winner at Un Certain Regard in Cannes in 2003, present at the Giornate degli autori in Venice in 2006 and 2017, and at the Panorama section of the Berlinale in 2012) and produced by Barney Production; Dirty, Difficult and Dangerous by Wissam Charaf (discovered in the ACID programme in Cannes in 2016 with Heaven Sent [+see also:
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) who wrote the script together with Mariette Desert (produced by Aurora Films); Far from Tougan (original title: Loin de Tougan) by Berni Goldblat (discovered in Berlin in 2017 in the Generation section with Wallay [+see also:
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which had then won the Young Audience European Film Award 2018) who wrote the script together with Elsa Chabrol (production: Les Films du Djabadjah); and Un rêvé étoilé (provisional title: A Starred Dream) by Cédric Ido (who had co-directed Château [+see also:
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), adapted from the autobiography Un rêve d’enfant étoilé by Yazid Ichemrahen (produced by De l’autre côté du périph [+see also:
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).

Also set to be showcased are Under The Clouds (original title: Sous les nuages), written and set to be directed by Nicolas Cazalé (Sacrebleu Productions); Mary (original title: Mary s’en va danser) by Stéphanie Lagarde (who wrote the script together with Marion Desseigne RavelTripode Productions),;L’enfant-mouche written and directed by Philippe Pollet-Villard (Delante Productions); Chéramy by Suzy Gillet (who co-wrote the script with Nadja DumouchelDublin Films),;We Are (no director attached yet - written by Mathieu Buffler, Christophe Fustini and Patrick Guinzio Doué - produced by CTon Film); the documentary Misty – A Portrait of Erroll Garner by Georges Gachot (produced by Idéale Audience); and the animated sci-fi project Mars Express by Jérémie Périn (who wrote the script together with Laurent Sarfati – production: Everybody on Deck).

Animation is very present among the German projects, with The Weavers (script by Benjamin Schreuder and Stéphane Bubel – produced by Anima Mundi); Madame Pamplemousse (adapted by The Huzlys from the famous children’s books of Rupert Kingfisher – produced by Baby Blue Pictures For Sugar Town Filmproduktion); and Tafiti – Off Through The Desert by Andrea Block and Christian Haas (script by Julia Boehme and Nicolas Hause – production: Tradewind Pictures). The selection also includes documentary projects Embodied Chorus by Danielle Davie and Mohamed Sabbah (produced by Heartwake Films) and Mr. Five Percent – Red Lines by Christoph Goldman and Leif Karpe (Medea Film Factory). In the fiction department, we also find The Entertainers (original title: Clarissa ou les divertisseurs) by Aline Fisher (written by the director and produced by Bredok Film Production); F for Fittko by Loren David Marsh (who wrote the script together with Jochen Brunow – production: Zischlermann Filmproduktion); and political drama Innocence (provisional title – no director yet attached - produced by San Cinema Uk & Co KG).

Finally, it is worth noting, in the coproductions market, a Franco-German project: Iris by Myrsini Aristidou (written by the director - produced by French company The Living and German company Road Movies, and already supported by Cyprus company Filmblades, Greek company Graal and the Cypriot ministry for Education and Culture.

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(Translated from French)

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