×

Berlin: Raoul Peck Set to Direct August Diehl in ‘Young Karl Marx’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Haitian vet helmer Raoul Peck is on board to direct “The Young Karl Marx,” a period drama chronicling the turbulent youth and friendship between Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.

The ambitious project has lured two German stars: August Diehl (“Night Train to Lisbon,” pictured above) for the role of Marx, and Alexander Fehling (“Inglorious Basterds”) for the role of  Engels.

Pic is being produced by Agat Films and Velvet Film in France, Rohfilm in Germany and Artemis Prods. in Belgium.

Films Distribution, Nicolas Brigaud-Robert and Francois Yon’s Paris-based arthouse company, has acquired international sales to the film.

Written by Peck and Pascal Bonitzer, “The Young Karl Marx” opens with 26-year old Marx who goes with his wife, Jenny, into exile, and depicts Marx’ encounter with Engels, the son of a textile factory owner, in 1844 Paris.

Set against the backdrop of the 1848 rebellions, which culmintaed in police raids and riots, the movie charts Marx and Engels’ journey to complete Communist Manifesto, which gave birth of the labor rights movement.

“Avoiding the habitual caricature of the old bearded revolutionary icon, this film is the coming of age of two young and daring intellectuals who will have an extraordinary impact on the world of the 20th century and beyond,” said Peck, whose latest “Murder in Pacot” will be playing in the Berlinale Panorama Special on Feb. 10.

Popular on Variety

“The Young Karl Marx” is backed by pay TV Canal Plus, pubcaster France Televisions (France 3 Cinema), as well as Germany’s Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg (MBB) and Mitteldeutsche Medienforderung (MDM). Diaphana and Neue Visionen will release the movie is France and Germany, respectively.

Lensing is scheduled to begin in July.

 

 

 

 

 

More Film

  • Sex

    Berlinale Series Head Julia Fidel on Reflecting Diversity in Serialized Storytelling

    Sexual exploration, indigenous perspectives and refugees of all stripes characterize much of this year’s selections at the Berlin Film Festival’s Berlinale Series showcase. It’s the first edition under Julia Fidel, who took over as the section’s head from Solmaz Azizi last year, and while she’s not shaking things up, she’s is looking to put her [...]

  • Ethiopia Africa Hub

    Berlin: Government Support Has Ethiopian Biz Ready to Boom

    For the past decade, Ethiopia has boasted the world’s fastest-growing economy, and its new reform-minded government seems determined to harness that growth to transform an already vibrant creative sector. That was the takeaway from a presentation Sunday morning at the Berlinale Africa Hub, led by producer Mehret Mandefro (“Difret”) and director Abraham Gezahagne, who outlined [...]

  • No Hard Feelings

    'No Hard Feelings': Film Review

    At dawn in an orderly, middle-class suburb in regional Germany, three young people — a girl and two guys — stagger home from a night out. Two of them are siblings, two of them friends and two of them are falling in love. One of them is very drunk and tripping over the long blond [...]

  • All the Dead Ones

    'All the Dead Ones': Film Review

    There are a host of important, even vital ideas behind “All the Dead Ones,” a hybrid period piece addressing Brazil’s unresolved legacy of slavery and the imprint it’s had on an all-too-often downplayed contemporary racism of malignant toxicity. Set largely in 1899, 11 years after the abolition of slavery but designed so modern São Paulo [...]

  • Olivia Wilde

    Searchlight Aggressively Pursuing World Rights to Olivia Wilde's 'Perfect' at EFM

    Searchlight Pictures has emerged as the frontrunner for the Olivia Wilde-directed gymnastics movie “Perfect,” amid a days-long bidding war out of Berlin’s EFM. Variety understands that the studio is ‘heavily pursuing’ world rights to the hot title — one of a crop of female-led projects at the market — with A24, Warner Bros. and Neon [...]

  • 'High Ground' Review: Ugly Conflict and

    'High Ground': Film Review

    There’s a hint of John Ford to “High Ground,” a sinewy, sun-baked faceoff between indigenous and invading armies in the Arnhem Land wilderness of Australia, though by now we probably need a better word than “western” for films that situate the tensions and tropes of Hollywood operas in their own distinct geographical context. Handsomely mounted [...]

  • Undine

    'Undine': Film Review

    Christian Petzold’s “Undine” begins with a breakup. Framed tightly on the face of lead actor Paula Beer, we absorb the news as she does. But this is no ordinary separation, and as jilted lovers go, Undine’s far from typical. Her name betrays what sets her apart, although in the vast realm of mythological entities, undines [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content