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Flemish pics take 35% of local B.O.

'Missing' tops charts

BRUSSELS — Local pics took 35% of B.O. in the Flemish half of Belgium last weekend, the highest share for home-grown productions since 2003.

Foreign language Oscar entry “Ben X” remains popular, but the surge comes from “Vermist” (Missing), a slick thriller that has scored the best opening weekend for a Flemish film in 10 years.

In “Vermist,” police investigate a 16-year-old girl’s disappearance, revealing dark secrets in her life but also throwing suspicion on her father. This continues Flemish cinema’s recent obsession with missing children.

Helmer Jan Verheyen has a reputation for crowd-pleasing, locally set films, such as the “Team Spirit” soccer comedies. “Vermist” is a change of pace, carried by a cast of local stars, such as Koen de Bauw, Filip Peeters and Kevin Janssens.

Eyeworks and TV company VT4 produce.

Opening on Oct. 31, “Vermist” scored an audience of 61,600 by the end of the weekend, 16.75% of the market in Flanders and Brussels. “Ben X” had 6.44%, while kids’ pic “Plop en de pinguin” had 11.78%. All three films are handled by Kinepolis Film Distribution.

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