From the Flanders (i) magazine

Death in the family

The story of the new hit TV series Clan centres on the five Goethals sisters, one of whom has married the detestable Jean-Claude Delcorps. The other four decide that it would be better for all concerned if their brother-in-law were dead. In the first episode we see him lying in a coffin, so it seems they get their wish, but this still leaves a lot of unanswered questions. ‘It’s a mystery,’ explains Malin-Sarah Gozin, the show’s creator. ‘Clan starts out as why-and-how-did-it-happen, rather than a whodunit.

Text Ian Mundell | Portrait Bart Dewaele

clanwomenAll of us have murderous thoughts from time to time, but FIPA selected Clan takes them one step further. 'Everybody thinks: “oh, I could kill that person!”,' explains Nathalie Basteyns, co-director of the series. 'And what they think, we show!' The series was born from one of those idle thoughts that just won't go away.

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Published on Thursday 23 May 2013

Beginning at the End

Death comes to all of us, but remains a taboo subject for many people. Three Flemish documentary filmmakers have ventured into this sensitive territory and emerged with striking films about the end of life. They discuss the challenges of documenting death.

Text Ian Mundell

Still Claire, Me And My BrotherAll three filmmakers had personal reasons for beginning their projects. 'When I was very young I was scared of death,' says Maris De Smedt, whose film Claire, Me and My Brother follows the last months of a teenage girl. 'I would wake up worried about when I was going to die, and worry if my heart was still beating. I wanted to make a film about being confronted with death, so that perhaps I could live with another idea of it in the future.'

Similar anxieties motivated Nathalie Basteyns, whose film Still is about suicide. 'As a child I always feared that someone I loved would go away,' she recalls. 'Suicide was even worse, because I think it is a very lonely act.'

For Manno Lanssens the impetus came from seeing his grandmother's difficult final year. 'It was not a very nice way to die, so I asked myself: is there a good way to die? And that was the start of the project.' His documentary Epilogue, which received its world première at Visions du Réel in Nyon, follows a woman with terminal cancer as she spends her last months at home, surrounded by her family.

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Published on Friday 29 July 2011

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