CANNES — Emma Thompson (“Saving Mr. Banks”), Daniel Bruhl (“Rush”) and Mark Rylance (“The Other Boleyn Girl”) have been confirmed to star in Vincent Perez’s “Alone in Berlin.” Alison Thompson’s Sunray Films is selling the film in Cannes.
X-Filme’s Stefan Arndt and Uwe Schott (“Cloud Atlas,” “Amour”), and Master Movie’s Marco Pacchioni (“Bluesbreaker,” “Bye Bye Blondie”) are producing, together with James Schamus (“Brokeback Mountain,” “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”), with a screenplay written by Achim von Borries (“Good Bye Lenin!”) and Perez.
The film will be co-produced by FilmWave’s Christian Grass and Paul Trijbits, who are also handling the U.K. rights. X-Filme retains the German rights and Master Movie the French rights, with Sunray Films handling international sales and distribution for all other territories. X Verleih, which is the distribution arm of X-Film, will release in Germany. Pathe will distribute in France.
“Alone in Berlin” will start pre-production during the winter of 2014 in Germany.
Based on a true story, Hans Fallada’s powerful and redemptive novel, written shortly after World War II, describes a city paralyzed by fear. Otto and Anna Quangel are an ordinary couple living in a shabby apartment block in Berlin, trying, like everyone else, to stay out of trouble under Nazi rule. But when their only child is killed fighting at the front, their loss propels them into an extraordinary act of resistance.
Joining the production team are cinematographer Stephane Fontaine (“Rust and Bone,” “A Prophet”), editor Francois Gedigier (“On the Road”) and production designer Jean-Vincent Puzos (“Amour”).
Arndt commented: “We are thrilled that Emma, Daniel, and Mark were immediately as fascinated as we are by this most suspenseful love story of all times. And it’s a true story, bestselling 60 years after its first publication.”
Marco Pacchioni said: “It’s been a long journey since I bought the rights to the novel with Vincent Perez seven years ago, I am happy to see so many great actors, producers and distributors join us on our adventure to bring this extraordinary work to the big screen.”
Thompson commented: “It’s a delight and a privilege to be re-uniting once again with some of my old partners on the film version of this recently re-discovered 20th century masterpiece. It couldn’t be more worthy of a film adaption, and we’re looking forward to bringing it to audiences around the globe.”