BUCHAREST: Acclaimed Romanian helmer Radu Jude is set to start shooting his new feature film Is This What You Were Born For? with his regular producer Ada Solomon at Hi Film Productions in summer 2017. This Romanian/Czech/French/Bulgarian coproduction will tackle a delicate subject in Romanian history, the massacre of approximately 20,000 Jewish people by the Romanian army in Odessa in 1941.
The script penned by Jude follows a young theatre director, who plans to do a reenactment of the Odessa massacre during a Bucharest Days cultural event, despite the doubts of the city hall (the initiator of the event) and her personal problems.
During the WWII, when Romania was allied with Nazi Germany, Romanian and German soldiers conquered the city of Odessa in 1941. Following an attack which caused the death of several Romanian soldiers, Romanian marshal Ion Antonescu ordered the execution of the Jewish population in the region.
The massacre was banned from Romanian history books for decades and even today, without an official acknowledgement from Romanian officials, most Romanians still deny it.
Ada Solomon said that Is This What You Were Born For? / Pentru asta te-ai nascut? is currently in development/preproduction. Marius Panduru, Jude’s regular collaborator and one of the most requested Romanian DoP’s, will lens. The main characters are played by Ioana Iacob, Alex Bogdan and theatre director Alexandru Dabija, whom Jude previously cast in his short film Shadow of a Cloud / Ca o umbra de nor, selected for Cannes Quinzaine des Realisateur, and in his feature film Aferim!
Hi Film Productions is producing in coproduction with Czech company endorfilm, France’s Les Films d’Ici and Bulgaria’s Klas Film. The budget is approximately 1.6 m EUR with 80% already in place, Solomon told FNE.
The project is supported by SEE Network, the Romanian Film Centre with 524,500 EUR / 2.4 m RON, Aide aux Cinémas du Monde, the Czech State Cinematography Fund with almost 150,000 EUR / 4 m CZK, and by the Bulgarian National Film Center. Romanian financiers Covalact and Dr. Oetker are also backing.
Shooting will take place in Bucharest in summer-fall 2017, and the film is set to be finished in mid-2018. Beta Cinema will handle the sales and Micro Film will release the film in Romania.
Director: Radu JudeScriptwriter: Radu JudeDoP: Marius PanduruCast: Ioana Iacob, Alex Bogdan, Alexandru Dabija