Two Dutch epics selected for Telescoop funding

Two Dutch epics selected for Telescoop funding

by Boyd van Hoeij

18/04/2013 - The Telescoop initiative, from NPO (Dutch Public Broadcasting), the CoBO Fund andNetherlands Film Fund, have awarded €1.8 million in production funding each to two films, both historical epics. The Telescoop funds are intended to support "quality films for large audiences".

The recipients are two projects from well-established directors: Joram Lürsen's adaptation of Thomas Rosenboom bestselling novel Public Works, and Roel Reiné's cinematic portrayal of one of the Netherlands' most famous naval heroes: Michiel de Ruyter (photo).

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Lürsen previous film, The Family Way, was also a Telescoop beneficiary and took in almost €7 in box-office receipts locally. His new project is an ambitious historical film set in the late 19th century, in which two related men, one a violin-maker in Amsterdam and the other a pharmacist in the countryside, try to rise above their class, with tragic results.

The novel sold more than 400,000 copies in the Netherlands alone and was adapted for the screen by Frank Ketelaar. The film will be produced by Topkapi Films in association with Wild Bunch Benelux, publisher Querido and broadcaster VPRO.

Menuet in Belgium and Zentropa Berlin will co-produce the feature in association withApple Film in Poland and I'm Film in Hungary. Wild Bunch will release the film in the autumn of 2015.

Michiel de Ruyter was written for the screen by Alex van Galen and Lars Boom and will be directed by Reiné, for whom it will be the first Dutch feature again after a long period of directing mostly direct-to-video films in the US.

The sea-faring epic will be produced by Farmhouse Film & TV and will be distributed by Universal. Broadcaster TROS is on board as a co-producer.

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