Bille August has boarded “Night Train to Lisbon,” an adaptation of Pascal Mercier’s bestselling novel and the first co-production from a new partnership between Zurich-based C-Films and Studio Hamburg Production.
The pic follows an aging Swiss professor of classical languages who, after a chance encounter with a Portuguese woman, quits his job and travels to Lisbon in the hope of discovering the fate of a certain author, a doctor and poet who fought against Portuguese dictator Antonio de Oliveira Salazar.
Benjamin Seikel, head of C-Films’ production subsidiary in Hamburg, is producing. The screenplay was written by Ulrich Herrmann and Greg Latter.
August, whose last feature was 2007 apartheid drama “Goodbye Bafana,” will likely begin production on the film by year’s end, with most of the pic set to shoot on location in Portugal.
Studio Hamburg and C-Films are currently putting together financing and subsidy funding for the project. Casting has yet to be announced.
“Night Train to Lisbon” has sold 2.5 million copies worldwide, including 2 million in German-speaking territories.