Three thrillers and a lob in the background for the 49th session of Wallimage.

  • 23.10.2013

La Marche, his long-awaited second feature film with a flattering reputation, has not yet been released, and Nabil Ben Yadir, director of Les Barons, is already planning a sequel. The board of Wallimage has decided to co-finance Dode Hoek, his first thriller.

Produced by Entre chien et Loup, Dode Hoek is a muscular thriller that will take place mainly in Flanders. Jan Decleir will play an old, racist and violent commissioner who is about to retire to become the head of a far-right party list in Antwerp. A man full of certainties and hatred who will take a big slap during his last investigation which leads him to Charleroi. On paper Dode Hoek is very reminiscent of huge Belgian box-office hits like De Zaak Alzheimer/The Killer’s Memory or Dossier K. To find Eyeworks Belgium in the co-production of this 100% Belgian project is therefore not a surprise… but another guarantee of success. What if, in the wake of his already popular Barons, Nabil Ben Yadir was the first French-speaking Belgian director to blow up the national box office?

Another candidate for theatrical success, La French was brought to us by Scope Pictures, which is very accustomed to doing this. La French is an old fashioned thriller that takes us back to the French connection that ruled Marseille in the 70s. Cédric Jimenez(Aux yeux de tous), who grew up in the south of France, decided to adapt the true story of a fight led by an idealistic judge against a lawless kingpin. Great idea: he chose to play the two men, charismatic friends. Jean Dujardin in the camp of justice, Gilles Lellouche in that of the thugs with dirty hands. To frame this duo, the production called upon a constellation of actors of the highest calibre: Guillaume Gouix(Mobile Home, Hors Les Murs), Bruno Todeschini, Benoit Magimel, Céline Salette, Mélanie Doutey and a few Belgians such as Pauline Burlet(Le Passé), Erico Salamone, Pierre Lopez or Patrick Descamps. Of the 68 days of shooting, 39 will take place in Belgium, five of them in Wallonia. Sound and editing will also be done in-house. A consistent proposal!

We remain in the world of the detective story with Missing in Winter. In this more intimate project, also quite dark, a cop converted into a debt collector sets out to find a girl he picked up hitchhiking, then dumped in the middle of nowhere because she was making a pass at him. This character, plagued by morbid obsessions, will be played by Kad Merad, who has probably played his first major dramatic role since I’m Fine, Don’t Worry. Iris Production brought to Wallimage this third feature film by French director Christophe Lamotte. Ten days of shooting are planned in Wallonia and all the sound postproduction will be done there. The first announcement will be made in December.

The fourth feature film selected by the Board is a minority co-production set in the world of amateur tennis. Set in northern France, it confronts a father and son with the spectre of failure: when Jerome loses his job in a shopping mall, 11-year-old Ugo decides to put even more effort into succeeding in his favorite sport. In order not to disappoint his family, he is ready to do anything. Olivier Gourmet shot Terre Battue just after La Marche. The film is currently in post-production. Inspired by a news story that had some repercussion, it is above all a film about humiliation and lies, as could be The Opponent or The Schedule. Stéphane Demoustier admits that the tone of his first film is very influenced by the cinema of the Dardennebrothers… who chose to support him by co-producing it. A winning move?