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Rothemund sets sail for ‘Galapagos’

1930s survivor tale based on true story

BERLIN — German helmer Marc Rothemund is set to bring the true story of a group of ill-fated European settlers, who sought to forge a new life on one of the Galapagos Islands during the 1930s, to the big screen.

Munich-based Telepool and KJ Entertainment have teamed with Cologne producer Tatfilm to jointly develop and produce “Galapagos.”

The film is based on the 1959 autobiographical book “Postlagernd Floreana” by Margarete Wittmer, who arrived on the island with her husband and stepson in 1932 in the hopes of starting a new life far away from the economic and political reality in Germany. The Wittmers shared the island of Floreana with other eccentric settlers, including a Berlin dentist and his mistress as well as an Austrian-French baroness and her two lovers.

After just a few months, however, life in paradise turned into a living hell as three of the settlers died under mysterious circumstances while another three vanished without a trace.

Rothemund, who won the European Film Award for his 2005 Nazi-era drama “Sophie Scholl: The Final Days,” is directing from a screenplay by Petra Lueschow (“The Murder Farm”).

The producers are looking to cast high-profile German and international talent for the pic.

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