Italian heartthrob Toni Servillo (“Gomorrah,” “Il Divo”) announced at the Turin Film Festival this week that he will be starring in the new film from Palme d’Or winning Greek filmmaker Theo Angelopoulos. Principal photography on the picture, titled “The Other Sea (L’altro Mare)” begins on December 26th (way to tip off the paparazzi, guys).
The film “focuses on contemporary Athens and Greece under the squeeze of the European financial crisis and the desperation of people who lose their jobs as well as the responsibility of the political class.” It certainly sounds like a timely subject and with a low 4-5 million euro budget, Angelopoulos will no doubt have creative freedom throughout the process. The film has a six-week shoot and it would be nearly impossible to turn it around for the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, but perhaps, 2013? Servillo also mentioned that he was cast in the film because, “[Angelopoulos] has a liking for Italian actors.”
The film will tell the story of a father/daughter relationship, with Servillo in the role of the patriarch and an unnamed Greek theater actress slotting in the other role. The father is a shady politician who assists illegal immigrants from Macedonia and Albania to enter Greece. Meanwhile, the daughter is putting on “The Threepenny Opera” in a factory where many illegal workers have been laid off. And while this all sounds straightforward, we’d guess that the cerebral Angelopoulos will be bringing a much more philosophical look at the issue that it seems every nation is grappling with these days.
Angelopoulos’s last film was the 2008 English-language Willem Dafoe and Bruno Ganz-starrer “The Dust of Time.” Ganz has starred in many of Angelopoulos’s award-winning films, but he is still known in America as “That guy who played Hitler and compared the ‘Avatar’ trailer to ‘Thundercats.’” However, Angelopoulos’s film “Eternity and a Day,” also starred Ganz, and earned him a Palme d’Or victory.
Here’s hoping ‘The Other Sea’ is equally successful for Angelopoulos. [ScreenDaily]