'Traveler,' 'Hector' in the works
The recently restructured Egoli Tossell is gearing up for a slew of local and international productions.The Berlin-based shingle, which produced high-profile pics “Carlos” and “The Last Station,” was rescued from insolvency this year by Film House Germany, the recently launched production arm of Frankfurt-based financial services outfit ABL Group. As a majority shareholder, Film House, which also holds a stake in Marco Kreuzpaintner’s Summerstorm Entertainment, is bankrolling new pics. Among upcoming projects is “Traveler,” a 1989-set drama about a war photographer who falls for two German sisters, one in Vietnam, the other in East Berlin. Oliver Hirschbiegel, who just finished helming Tom Fontana’s “Borgia” TV series, is set to direct from a script by Daniel Hardy. Egoli Tossell is partnering with “Lost in Translation” producers Ross Katz and Fred Berger of Civil Dawn Prods. on the $10 million project. Additionally, the company is finally getting the long-in-the-works “Hector and the Search for Happiness” off the ground. Peter Chelsom (“Hannah Montana: The Movie”) will direct the globetrotting drama, based on the bestseller by Francois Lelord about a jaded young psychiatrist who sets off to find the secret of happiness. Egoli Tossell is co-producing the $20 million pic with Fidelite in Paris, Film Afrika in Cape Town and Wild Bunch Germany, which has acquired German-speaking rights.The company is also partnering with Tivi Magnusson of Copenhagen-based M&M Prods. plus Til Schweiger and Tom Zickler’s Barefoot Films on Agust Gudmundsson’s World War II thriller “War Below Zero,” with Schweiger and Danish thesp Mads Mikkelsen attached to star. Other projects include Iain Softley’s $35 million medieval epic “Ivanhoe” and Maria von Heland’s “Lexi,” a romantic comedy starring Heike Makatsch about a frustrated young mother whose life careens out of control when she falls for another man.