‘Wind’ high in Belgium

Pic helps coffers as a big local opening film

BRUSSELS — Belgian film production got a much-needed boost this week as helmer Tom Barman’s feature debut “Any Way the Wind Blows” opened strongly in the country.

Barman is the front man of Belgian rock outfit Deus. Some 14,000 Belgians went to see the pic, which is distributed by Cineart, in its first week of general release on 12 screens through June 25. This makes it the strongest local opener of the last 12 months.

Pic follows the escapades of eight people on a hot Friday afternoon in Antwerp, before they head off to a party in the evening.

Produced by Corridor, it gained financial support from the Flemish Audiovisual Fund, which stumped up about half a million euros ($570,000). Other backers included the European Union, pubcasters RTBF and VRT and commercial broadcaster Canal Plus Flanders.

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Recent Belgian hits have been few and far between. Christian de Schutter of the Flemish Audiovisual Fund told Daily Variety that the org hopes to reverse this trend with a new slate. These include Erik Van Looy’s “The Alzheimer Case” and Felix van Groeningen’s debut “Steve & Sky,” both in production.