“The Killing Fields” and “The Mission” director Roland Joffé is in talks to helm an epic drama spanning the two World Wars in a project set up with international film and media fund APX Capital Group.
“L’Inverno” is the first pic to emerge from APX’s new Music World Films & TV venture — a new division headed by Mathew Knowles (Beyoncé’s father), who sold his Music World Entertainment Group to APX last month. As part of the deal, the film and TV division of Knowles’ company has been merged with the studio.
APX will complete the financing on “L’Inverno,” with the $12-million budgeted movie starting principal photography in Rome, Italy, this fall. (APX has a 10-year commitment to move productions to Italy.)
Spanning two World Wars, “L’Inverno” tells the story of former childhood friends SS Officer Nikolaus Führich and Jewish violinist Elisabeth Soloveichik, expressed through the eyes of Elizabeth’s brother, Aaron, a successful violinist whose war wounds obstruct his ability to play. Depicting torn loyalty, love, hope and the transcendent power of music, “L’Inverno” is described as “an exploration of human survival and the inner conflicts that arise when loyalties – among family, love and country – clash.”
Joining the cast is Oscar nominee Klaus Maria Brandauer (“Out of Africa”) in the lead role; Olivier Martienez (“Mosquito State,” “Unfaithful”) in the supporting lead; and Tobias Moretti (“The Dark Valley”). Rufus Sewell (“Old,” “The Pale Horse”) is in discussions for the part of Aaron.
The creative team includes writer and producer Sharron Aubrey (“Sugar”), Djonny Chen (“Before Night Falls”) and APX’s head of productions Jordi Rediu (“The Last Full Measure”). Executive producers on behalf of APX include co-CEO and head of North America Noam Baram and co-CEO Yona Wiesenthal, as well as Knowles.
Knowles said: “Part of our ethos at Music World Film & TV is to emphasize cultural awareness. ‘L’Inverno’ is an enthralling, timeless story that’s universally appealing and relevant to today’s audience. During a time of many global challenges, this film expresses themes of overcoming adversities, hope and the virtue of humanity.”
Aubrey added: “The making of ‘L’Inverno’ has been an incredibly moving process. The film is a captivating and intense character-driven tale that’s stirring and strikingly atmospheric. I have no doubt that it will be a compelling dramatic motion-picture experience. Roland, who has worked with some of the most astonishing actors of our time, is fearless of sensitive subject matters and knows how to deliver a compelling and emotionally intelligent story.”
APX’s heads include Emmy Award-winning producer Yona Wiesenthal (“Google Baby”); entrepreneur and producer Noam Baram (“Hannah Can You Hear Me”); and Italian film and media entrepreneur Augusto Pelliccia (“Li Paradis”).
Based in New York, the business is described as a film, media and entertainment fund that’s owned by a group of film and TV studios, post-production and broadcast facilities, and private financiers from the U.S., Italy, Spain and other parts of Europe. In 2021, APX has created a consortium of film and TV studios in Italy to service the film industry both in that country and Stateside.
(Pictured, L-R: Roland Joffé, Olivier Martinez, Rufus Sewell)