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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Belgium / France

The final clapperboard has slammed on Eléonore Saintagnan’s Le Fléau

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- The young French director based in Brussels has just wrapped filming on her new movie in Brittany

The final clapperboard has slammed on Eléonore Saintagnan’s  Le Fléau
Director Eléonore Saintagnan

After turning heads with Une fille d’Ouessant, a tale-come-documentary which is anchored in reality but which flirts with fiction, young French filmmaker based in Brussels Eléonore Saintagnan is back with a medium-length film clearly following the same lines.

In Une fille d’Ouessant, the filmmaker imagined what it would be like to live on the island of Ouessant at the beginning of the 20th century. Whilst leading a writing residency on the westernmost island of France, she dreams she’s the daughter of a fisherman, spinning wool from her sheep and nourishing her story with archive images which shore up her ramblings.

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In Le Fléau (working title), the filmmaker is once again the heroine of her own tale. Short on inspiration, she drives west. Her car breaks down in the depths of Central Brittany, miles away from anything, especially the sea. She sees it as a sign and rents a campsite cabin overlooking a lake. The landscape brings back memories from her childhood. As a little girl, she spent her holidays in a similar place. Wandering through this isolated region, crossing paths with its inhabitants, from one mobile home to the next, she observes the present, summons up the past and allows herself to be overwhelmed by fiction.

The cast will consist of a blend of professional and non-professional actors from Belgium and Brittany. Recognisable names include that of Rosemary Standley who’s better known as the singer from the blues rock group Moriarty, as well as from the Birds on a Wire duo. This film marks her screen debut. We’ll also see Belgian actor Jean-Benoît Ugeux (enjoying verbose supporting roles in films such as Fishlove [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, SpaceBoy [+see also:
film review
interview: Olivier Pairoux
film profile
]
and Racer and the Jailbird [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Michael Roskam
film profile
]
, which ultimately won him a Magritte award, having also directed short films such as Abada, The Fratres and La Musique).

The movie is produced by Alice Lemaire and Sébastien Andres on behalf of Michigan Films, with the support of the Wallonia Brussels Federation Film and Audiovisual Centre and their initiative offering financial aid to lightweight productions. This support programme has likewise given rise to films such as Madly in Life [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Raphaël Balboni & Ann Sirot
film profile
]
(awarded seven Magritte prizes, including Best Film), Mother Schmuckers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Harpo and Lenny Guit
film profile
]
, selected for the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, and Aya [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Simon Coulibaly Gillard
film profile
]
, selected for ACID. Aya was also produced by Michigan Films, who are shooting another film backed by the lightweight production initiative this summer, Il pleut dans la maison, which is the first fiction feature by young Belgian filmmaker Paloma Sermon-Daï, who scooped this year’s Best Documentary Magritte for her wonderful work Petit Samedi [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Paloma Sermon Daï
film profile
]
.

Le Fléau is co-produced in France by Emmanuel Chaumet on behalf of Ecce Films, with the support of the Wallonia Brussels Federation Film and Audiovisual Centre, the CBA (Brussels Audiovisual Centre), the Film and Animation Centre (CNC), the Fondation des Artistes and the Brittany region.

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(Translated from French)

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