Hans Herbots and Sam Miller (Fortitude, Luther) team up to direct Rellik, a six-part miniseries for BBC One and HBO’s Cinemax. The series, written by the creators of The Missing, started shooting in London this week.
Rellik – killer spelt backwards – turns the serial killer genre on its head. The perpetrator is caught before the drama moves backwards in time to the very beginning – the crime itself and, ultimately, the killer. The search for the killer is headed by Gabriel Markham, a damaged and disfigured Met detective backed up by Elaine, an ambitious inspector.
Thom Vander Beken’s documentary film I Know You Are There is to have its world premiere at Visions du Réel, the documentary festival in Nyon, Switzerland (21-29 April). The competition also includes shorts by Pieter-Jan De Pue, Ira A. Goryainova and Farah Kassem, while filmmaker Sofie Benoot will be pitching her upcoming project at the festival’s co-production platform.
I Know You Are There is premiering in the ‘Regard Neuf’ section, a competitive line-up of first films by new talents. The film, which is produced by Minds Meet (Blue Silence, Violet), follows the story of coma patients, their families and the medical team at the University Hospital in Liège.
Team Chocolate and 13 Commandments, two new fiction series from Flanders, have been invited to the International Panorama at Séries Mania, the annual television festival in Paris (13-23 April). Also selected is drama series High Tides, a co-production with Flanders which Hans Herbots directed.
Team Chocolate is the story of Jasper Vloemans, a mentally challenged boy who works at a chocolate manufacturing company. When Tina, the colleague he’s in love with, is suddenly deported back to Kosovo, Jasper and his friends embark on a road trip to find her. The International Pan aroma also includes 13 Commandments, a TV series about a murderous modern-day Moses. Inspired by the 10 Commandments, he commits a series of gruesome crimes in order to jolt society’s conscience and restore its moral values.
Girls and Honey, a short film by Pieter-Jan De Pue, and the documentary Passe-Partout by Tim De Keersmaecker have been selected for Hot Docs (27 April – 7 May), Toronto’s prime documentary festival. The programme also includes Soetkin Verstegen’s short Mr Sand and Life to Come, a co-production with Flanders.
Having spent years in Afghanistan for his acclaimed debut feature The Land of the Enlightened, Pieter-Jan De Pue travelled to Ukraine for Girls and Honey. The Hot Docs line-up also includes Passe-Partout, a film which Tim De Keersmaecker made as part of the documentary series The Paved Road.
Blue Silence, Bülent Öztürk’s debut feature, is to have its world premiere at the Istanbul Film Festival (5-15 April), where it has been invited for both the National Competition and the Human Rights in Cinema Competition. Stephan Streker’s Noces, a co-production with Flanders, has also been selected.
Belgian-Kurdish director Bülent Öztürk is one of 12 filmmakers invited for the festival’s National ‘Golden Tulip’ Competition. In addition, his debut feature has also been selected for the Human Rights in Cinema Competition, a selection of international features and documentaries promoting human rights and the principles of individual freedom, political liberty and the rule of law.
Flanders will be the guest of honour at this year’s edition of Cartoon Movie (8-10 March), Europe’s prime pitching and co-production platform for animated features. Some 10 animation producers from Flanders will present themselves during the event as the ‘Flandriens of Animation’. Three Flemish projects and five co-productions from Flanders will also be pitched at Cartoon Movie.
In total, 55 European projects have been invited to Cartoon Movie, which is being held in the city of Bordeaux this year. The event puts the spotlight on a specific region for the first time, with Flanders being granted the honours for this inaugural edition. Over the years, Flemish animation producers have played an important role in international co-productions, contributing to Oscar-nominated films such as The Triplets of Belleville, The Secret of Kells and A Cat in Paris. Flanders also has a strong record at Cartoon Movie, with companies like Grid Animation, Walking The Dog, nWave Pictures and Vivi Film all collecting Cartoon Movie Tributes as Producers of the Year.
Cloudboy, Meikeminne Clinckspoor’s feature debut, is to receive its international première at this year’s TIFF Kids (7-23 April). The programme also contains Emiel Sandtke’s short Flying Rats, as well as two co-productions: The Day My Father Became a Bush and the animated feature Richard the Stork.
In Cloudboy, 12-year-old city boy Niilas has to travel - much against his will - to Lapland where his mother and her new family live amongst the Sami, an indigenous reindeer-herding people. A Belgian-Swedish-Norwegian-Dutch co-production, Cloudboy won last year’s Work-in-Progress Award at the inaugural edition of NeXT in Ghent.
Netflix is to roll out the first season of De Mensen's hit drama series Beau Séjour on its platform as of March 16. The news follows the streaming giant's acquisition of rights to this raw, contemporary whodunit for a series of international territories. Most European markets will follow later because of rights issues.
Talk will be top of the menu at October’s invitation-only Flemish event, but otherwise it will be business as usual - with one small exception. It’s no longer just NeXT: in 2017, it’s time to CONNeXT.
Following last autumn’s highly successful pilot held just before Film Fest Gent in the picturesque Flemish city, the platform bringing together international distributors, sales agents and festival directors with the cream of Flemish filmmaking talent will be back in October with a larger line-up but the same friendly focus.
The event, whose slogan is ‘Connect to what’s new and who’s next’, will run over an intense and hospitable three days of networking, screenings and keynote talks running from October 8-11.
New Belgian TV drama Beau Séjour has been topping the charts in Flanders since the pilot episode aired on New Year’s Day. Broadcast in prime time on Sunday night, the series’ second episode reached over 1.5 million viewers in Flanders, a market share of 51.8%.
Following the buzz surrounding the series which won the Audience Award at last year’s Séries Mania in Paris, the pilot episode of Beau Séjour premiered to over a million live viewers in Flanders. Another 346,000 watched the episode on catch-up over the next seven days. The second episode drew more than 1.5 million viewers.