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Wednesday, 19 February 2020
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Series once more in the spotlight during the 12th screen.brussels fund session

Brussels, 19 February 2020 - For its first session in 2020, screen.brussels fund has selected 13 co-production projects for a total investment of €1,057,000, eight of which will be produced by Brussels producers. The selected projects include five television series, five feature films, two documentaries and one web series. These projects will result in more than €8 million in direct audiovisual spending in the regional economy.

Five television series

Pandore

Produced by Artémis Production (Brussels) and supported by the RTBF Series Fund and the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, Pandore will be directed by Vania Leturcq (Brussels) and Savina Dellicour (Brussels). Pandore is the story of a collision between justice and politics. It’s also the collision of a man and a woman who at a moment of personal crisis both open Pandora’s box and unleash forces that will inexorably lead to a merciless face-off. The large majority of filming (71 out of 80 days) and a little less than half of post-production (173 out of 393 days) will take place in Brussels. For this project, virtually the entire crew as well as four service providers are Brussels-based: Eye-Lite (Schaerbeek) for equipment rental, KGS (Schaerbeek) for grip equipment, Boxon (Ixelles) for sound equipment and Studio l’Équipe (Evere) for film lab work.

L’Opéra

Series destined for OCS and produced by Belga Production (Braine-l’Alleud) and Telfrance & Cie (France) and directed by Inti Calfat (Brussels), Dirk Verheye (Brussels), Cécile Ducrocq (Paris) and Laïla Marrakchi (Paris). When ballet director Sébastien proposes an early retirement to prima ballerina Zoé, she flatly refuses. The Opera is her home, her family, her life. A legal battle ensues between the ballet director and the prima ballerina. Her strategy for hanging on: dancing! Zoé has to get back in top shape and be cast as much as possible. Sébastien quickly learns that the Opera machine is more complex than he thought, as his first few weeks as ballet director prove difficult. About 40 technicians will work on this series and about 30 days of shooting are scheduled for Brussels, with the rest in Wallonia and Paris. Most of post-production will take place in Brussels (118 out of 156 days), with audio post-production being handled by Sonhouse (Koekelberg) and video post-production by Studio l’Équipe (Evere).

Lost Luggage

Produced by Les Gens (Brussels) and De Mensen (Zaventem) in co-production with De Mensen (Zaventem), this series for VRT will be directed by Nathalie Basteyns (Brussels) and Kaat Beels (Brussels). Just after the 22 March terrorist attacks at Brussels Airport, airport police inspector Samira Laroussa has to return lost luggage to the victims’ families. It proves to be the hardest job of her career. In doing so, she is faced with prejudice, pride and sadness, but Samira perseveres in her mission to help everyone. However, in her stubborn pursuit, she forgets one thing: herself. In addition to the two directors, about 15 technicians will work on this series, which will also involve several Brussels-based providers: Lites (Saint-Gilles) for lighting rental, Cine Qua Non (Brussels-City) for grip equipment rental, XD Colorgrading (Anderlecht) for colour grading, GCV Moustache Sound (Koekelberg) for sound equipment rental and Sonhouse (Koekelberg) for audio post-production.

La corde

Produced by Versus Production (Liège) and Les Films de l’Instant (France), this three-episode mini-series produced for Arte will be directed by Dominique Rocher (Paris). The scientific observatory in Helligskogen is lost in the middle of a dead zone in the Norwegian forest. The scientific community that works there is bubbling with excitement: they have finally been given the green light to complete their research. However, something disrupts their project: a rope, seemingly infinitely long, has appeared at the edge of the forest, as if it had been abandoned there. The mystery of this rope intrigues the members of this small community to the point that seven of them decide to follow it and try to discover its end... or its beginning. This project will be filmed entirely in Wallonia, the entire post-production will be done in Brussels thanks to Backstage (Schaerbeek) for post-synchronisation, Boxon (Ixelles) for mixing, Manneken Pix (Ixelles) for rushes lab work and video post-production, and Studio l’Équipe (Evere) for subtitling.

Match

Everything will be Brussels-based for this comedy series of 25 five-minute episodes produced for Be TV by Entre Chien et Loup (Brussels) and directed by Grégory Beghin (Brussels). Adapted from an original Norwegian series, Match tells the story of Rachel. There’s nothing really wrong in her life, but nothing really good either. She has the feeling that everyone is moving forward, except her. She lives with her flatmate and best friend Joseph, who goes from success to success. Like a football match, Rachel’s life has a running commentary and in each episode, she has to face a new challenge. In addition to the director, about 10 Brussels-based technicians work on this series. Both shooting and post-production will all be done in Brussels (77 days), sound editing and mixing will be handled by The Post Box (Ixelles), lighting by Eye-Lite (Schaerbeek), grip equipment by KGS (Schaerbeek) and camera rental by Story Digital (Ixelles).

Five feature films

Earwig

Produced by Frakas Productions (Liège), Petit Film (France) and Rook Films (UK) and directed by Lucile Hadžihalilović (Paris) and Geoff Cox (London). Somewhere in Europe, in the early 1930s. Albert, a 50-year-old veteran of the Great War, is hired to look after 12-year-old Mia. Most of his work consists in taking care of the young girl’s ice dentures, which must be changed several times each day. They live alone in a large flat with shuttered windows, which Mia never leaves. The phone rings regularly, and a voice asks about the young girl’s health. Most of the shooting will take place in Brussels (25 out of 29 days). Thirty-seven Brussels-based technicians will be employed on this production as well as five service providers: camera and lighting rental from Eye-Lite (Schaerbeek), location equipment rental from Citizen Ciné Services (Forest) and lab work and sound editing from Boxon (Ixelles). Grip equipment will be provided by KGS (Schaerbeek) and lastly, pre-mixing and sound effects will be handled by Studio l’Équipe (Evere).

Clara Sola

Produced by Need Productions (Brussels) and HOBAB (Sweden) and directed by Nathalie Álvarez Mesén (Stockholm). In an isolated village in Costa Rica, Clara, a 30-year-old woman, embarks on a journey to free herself from social and religious conventions and to take control of her sexuality and new powers. Thirteen Brussels-based technicians as well as various Brussels-based service providers will work on this project. Studio l’Équipe (Evere) will handle colour grading and sound effects, Eye-Lite (Schaerbeek) has been selected for equipment rental, Alea Jacta (Forest) for sound mixing and editing, Stempel (Anderlecht) for lab work and BeNuts (Etterbeek) for VFX.

Ritueel

Produced by Eyeworks Film &TV Drama (Zaventem), Les Films du Fleuve (Liège), Phanta Film (Netherlands) and Atlas Film (Germany) and directed by Hans Herbots (Antwerp). Kiki, a police diver who specialises in recovering dead bodies, discovers a severed hand in a Brussels canal. When Kiki learns that the place where she found this severed hand is an industrial site belonging to a family that built its fortune on colonial rubber plantations, she becomes convinced that this case is linked to the history of Belgium and the Congo. Seventeen days of filming out of 38 are scheduled in Brussels, and six Brussels-based crew members will work on this project, while video post-production will be entrusted to The Fridge (Koekelberg).

Carnet d’épices

Produced by Tarantula (Liège) and Master Five Cinematografica (Italy) and directed by Massimo Donati (Rome). Carnet d'épices is the adaptation of the novel of the same name, Diario di Spezie, written by Massimo Donati in 2013. It’s a road movie that depicts the journey of two characters: Luca Trevisan, a renowned Italian chef, and Andreas Dürren-Fischer, a major restorer of Flemish Old Master paintings, as they leave Belgium and head for northern Italy. It’s also a police thriller that explores the obsessive investigation led by Garrant, a Belgian policeman played by Fabrizio Rongione. It’s the story of a family and above all, it’s a pure tale of vengeance. Nineteen Brussels-based technicians will work on the film, with cameras rented from Eye-Lite (Schaerbeek).

Cool Abdoul

Produced by Potemkino Port (Antwerp), Beluga Tree (Brussels) and N279 Entertainment BV(Netherlands) and directed by Jonas Baeckeland (Ghent), Cool Abdoul is a biopic that traces the chaotic journey of Ismail Abdoul, a talented boxer who will do anything to succeed. Having made headlines in Flanders in the early 2000s, his Mauritanian father Azziz and his Belgian mother Martha raised him and his brother Hakim with Islamic values. Ismail is imbued with his father’s vision of life: respect must always be unconditional and mutual, and the boxing ring is the best place to earn it. He has only one goal: to reach the very top as a boxer. This project will include eight Brussels-based technicians as well as Brussels companies The Fridge (Koekelberg) for colour grading and Nozon (Koekelberg) for VFX.

Two documentaries

Royals at War

Produced by Création et Mémoire (Brussels), Les films de la mémoire (Forest) and Clarke Costelle et cie (France) and directed by Maud Guillaumin (Paris). This two-episode documentary looks at the strategies deployed by Europe’s royal families during World War II when faced with the rise to power of fascism and Nazism. Bound together by family ties, these monarchies found themselves, voluntarily or involuntarily, at the centre of Hitler’s political chessboard. Two non-production technicians are Brussels-based, equipment will be rented from KGS (Schaerbeek), audio post-production will be done by Chocolat Noisette (Brussels-City), video lab work by Triangle 7 (Auderghem) and VFX by Cobalt Film (Brussels-City).

Le dormeur éveillé

Produced by YC Aligator Film (Brussels) and directed by Boris Van der Avoort (Brussels) and Isabelle Dumont (Brussels). B., a film-maker and insomniac, decides to rescue his hours of insomnia from the void by filming his quest for sleep. The insomniac asks questions about these different states of consciousness and about the difficulties humans have in synchronising their social rhythms and biological ones. Fourteen Brussels-based technicians will work on this project. Studio l’Équipe (Evere) will be in charge of audio post-production, sound effects and video post-production, Manneken Pix (Ixelles) will handle colour grading, Triangle 7 (Watermael-Boitsfort) will do video lab work, Airs Prod (Saint-Gilles) will work on subtitling, and Cobalt Films (Brussels-City) will take care of VFX.

One web series

Brak

This web series with 12 eight-minute episodes produced by Potemkino (Brussels) for VTM GO will be directed by Charlie Dewulf (Ghent). When she hurts her foot during a crazy night out, Bobbie, a bubbly 34-year-old, is forced to lead a quieter life. After much resistance, her loyal friends, her ‘girls’ army’, help her confront her self-destructive impulses. The entire post-production for this web series will be done in Brussels at The Fridge (Koekelberg) and at 4audio (Schaerbeek).

Mainly majority Belgian productions

Out of the 13 projects, seven will receive the majority of their funding from Belgium. Pandore, Match, Brak, Le dormeur éveillé, Lost Luggage and Ritueel, while the other six are co-productions with minority Belgian funding: Earwig (France, UK), Clara Sola (Sweden), Carnet d’Épices (Italy), La Corde (France), L’Opéra (France) and Royals at War (France).

Seven women directors

The supported projects will have 7 women, 10 men and 1 non-binary directors at the helm.

Returns of nearly €8 million for the Brussels economy

total investment of €1,057,000 in these 13 projects (selected from 18 candidates) will generate returns of €8.6 million in direct spending in the Brussels audiovisual industry.

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