Kaurismaki to direct ‘Malandro’

Script written by 'Central Station's' Bernstein

Finnish director Mika Kaurismaki will direct the action comedy “Ze Malandro, the Capoeirist” from a screenplay by Brazilian scribe-helmer Marcos Bernstein, who co-wrote Walter Salles’ breakthrough pic “Central Station.”

“Ze Malandro” is produced by Brazil’s Boca a Boca Filmes and France’s Chic Films.

It continues Kaurismaki’s relationship with Brazil: he established a second home in Rio de Janeiro in the early 1990s, directed a documentary on Brazilian music, “Moro no Brasil,” in 2002 and helmed “Brasileirinho,” about traditional Brazilian “choro” music, two years ago, by which time he had moved to Salvador de Bahia.

Kaurismaki’s new venture features Brazil’s dance-like capoeira martial art: a French man travels to Bahia to look for his son who disappeared during a capoeira class. Searching for his son, he is helped by a capoeira master, Ze Malandro.

“I was thinking about doing a film about capoeira when the producers contacted me. We’re trying to make this a fun film. It’s an adventure movie as well,” Kaurismaki said.

Film now has an extended treatment. The producers will begin to move the film when it has a screenplay and cast, said Chic’s Lauranne Bourrachot.

Its makers aim to shoot second half 2008, Kaurismaki said.

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