Helmer's drama completes principal photography

Francis Ford Coppola, in Cannes as “Marie Antoinette” exec-producer, has completed principal photography in Romania on his low-budget artistic rejuvenation project “Youth Without Youth” — footage for the making-of docu of which has been shot by his wife Eleanor Coppola and “Apocalypse Now” editor Walter Murch.

Coppola has now begun editing a rough cut in Bucharest of the 1930s-set drama starring Bruno Ganz as Professor Stancislescu, an academic forced to become a fugitive. Plan is for the passion pic, which started shooting in October, to be ready next year.

“Youth” marks Coppola’s return to the director’s chair eight years after “The Rainmaker.” Coppola has said pic brings him back to the ambitions he had as a film student.

Gaul’s Pathe and Italy’s BIM Distribuzione have boarded “Youth” as co-producers with Coppola’s American Zoetrope shingle for which Fred Roos and Anahid are exec producing. The budget is roughly $ 5 million.

Crew Coppola is working with is largely Romanian — including his cinematographer and editor. Everyone involved is working with a big back-end component to the pay scale.

Based on a novella by Romanian author Mircea Eliade, “Youth” also stars Tim Roth, Alexandra Maria Lara, and Marcel Iures.

Eleanor Coppola was a co-director of docu “Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse.”

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