Arriving 15 years ago in Berlin with nothing but a suitcase full of dreams, French producer Philippe Bober is about to head home with a string of notable credits in the bag.
Bober kicked off his career in 1987, bringing in the non-Scandinavian financing for Lars von Trier’s “Europa.” He first produced on the Danish director’s TV mini “The Kingdom” (1994) and went on to co-produce his “Breaking the Waves” (1996).
Post von Trier, Bober has racked up B.O. and accolades with last year’s “Suzhou River” and Roy Andersson’s “Songs from the Second Floor,” Sweden’s 2001 foreign lingo Oscar submission. And this month, he’ll be at the Cannes film festival with Jessica Hausner’s “Lovely Rita,” which he co-produced.
Like all Bober projects, the von Trier connection was no coincidence and neither is Bober’s success. It all comes down to a few elements, including thorough talent scouting and a hand in post, he says: “Doing the post production has become almost a religion. If we get involved in a project we want to do the post, the sales and have a re-shoot right.”
Bober called von Trier as soon as he saw the helmer’s 1984 pic “The Element of Crime.” To find a suitable talent to helm “Suzhou” he commissioned a Chinese film student to track China’s sixth generation of directors.
Currently in post are Ulrich Seidl’s “Dog Days” and the Icelandic film “Noi Albinoi” by Dagur Karl.