Leth’s ‘Erotic Man’ attracts funding

Lars von Trier acts as creative producer

STOCKHOLM — Influential Danish filmmaker Jorgen Leth, a favorite on the festival circuit, has attracted 3.5 million Danish kroner ($600,000) in funding from the Danish Film Institute for “The Erotic Man.”

The $1.4 million docupic is being produced by Marianne Christensen and co-produced by Zentropa and Nordisk Film. Lars von Trier acts as creative producer. Delivery is expected during the first half of 2010.

Leth, who describes the pic as “a sensual, poetic and nude depiction of the erotic in man,” said his intention is to discover why eroticism plays such a large part in the life of the human.

Pic has no script in a traditional sense, but is based on documents, letters, pictures and poems by Leth, who has traveled to Brazil, Haiti, Panama and Tonga to collect material for the film. He now plans a train trip through Europe as part of his research.

Leth, who has made more than 40 docus, shorts and features, first attracted attention with his 1967 short “The Perfect Human.” He later exerted a strong influence on the development of the founding members of the Copenhagen-based Dogma movement, including Von Trier.

“Perfect Human” was the inspiration for the 2003 feature “The Five Obstructions,” which Leth helmed and scripted with Von Trier. The pic screened at Venice.

Leth has also worked as a film critic and in various roles at the Danish Film Institute.

In 1999, he was appointed Danish honorary consul to Haiti. He resigned following the revelation in his 2005 autobiography, “The Imperfect Man,” that he had had a sexual relationship with his cook’s 17-year-old daughter.

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