Three crime films and a baseline lob for the 49th Wallimage investment round.

  • 23.10.2013

La Marche, Nabil Ben Yadir’s much awaited second film, already preceded by a very flattering reputation, has not been released yet, but the director of Les Barons is already thinking of the next. The Wallimage board of Directors has indeed just decided to co-finance Dode Hoek, his first thriller.

Produced by Entre Chien et Loup, Dode Hoek is a powerful thriller mainly taking place in Flanders. Jan Declair will play an old, racist and violent superintendent who is close to retiring in order to be a leading candidate for an extreme right party, in Antwerp. This man, full of certainties and hate will take a big slap to the face when his last inquiry brings him to Charleroi. On paper, Dode Hoek reminds of Belgian box-office successes such as Memory of a Killer or Dossier K. It comes as no surprise that Eyeworks Belgium is co-producing this 100% Belgian work … and a sign of possible success. What if Nabil Ben Yadir, after his already very popular Les Barons, would become the first French-speaking Belgian director to score a commercial hit?

Another possible success comes from Scope Pictures, who proposed La French. It’s an old school crime film referencing the French Connection, reigning over Marseille in the seventies. Cedric Jimenez (Aux yeux de tous), who grew up in the South of France, decided to adapt the true story of an idealist judge facing a lawless and godless big shot. In a flash of genius, he chose two charismatic friends to play these two enemies. Jean Dujardin is on the side of the law opposite Gilles Lellouche who plays the dirty criminal. A group of star actors and actresses assist them: Guillaume Gouix (Mobile Home, Hors Les Murs), Bruno Todeschini, Benoit Magimel, Céline Salette, Mélanie Doutey and a few Belgians, namely Pauline Burlet (Le Passé), Erico Salamone, Pierre Lopez and Patrick Descamps. 39 out of 68 days of filming will take place in Belgium, five of which in Wallonia. Sound and editing will be done in this country too.

Disparue en Hiver remains in the same atmosphere of crime thrillers. This more intimate and quite dark project deals with a former police agent turned into a bill collector. He gets it into his head to find a young woman he gave a ride, but dumped her in the middle of nowhere because she was coming onto him. This character, fallen prey to morbid obsessions, will be playe by Kad Mared, for the actor a first big dramatic role since Je vais bien ne t’en fais pas. The project was submitted to Wallimage by Iris Production, it is the third feature length film for French director Christophe Lamotte. Ten days of filming are scheduled in Wallonia, as is the entire sound post-production phase. Filming starts in December.

The fourth film is a minority co-production set in the world of amateur tennis. In the North of France, a father and son are confronted with failure: when Jérôme loses his job in a shopping centre, his eleven year old son Ugo decides to work even harder to be victorious in his chosen sport. He is ready to do anything not to disappoint his entourage. Olivier Gourmet shot Terre Battue right after La Marche. The film is currently in post-production. It was inspired by a news item, but the film mostly handles humiliation and lies. Stéphane Demoustier admits that the tone of his film is certainly influenced by the cinema of the Dardenne brothers … who decided to help him by co-producing it. A winning team?