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Kalev strands Casta on The Island


Kalev strands Casta on The Island

Bulgarian director Kamen Kalev has started filming on his second feature, The Island, starring Laetitia Casta. The French actress-model plays journalist Sophie opposite Denmark's Thure Lindhardt (Angels & Demons, Brotherhood [+see also:
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), who plays her boyfriend Daniel.

The couple arrives on a small Bulgarian island off the Black Sea coast with the intention of spending a few peaceful days there. Only a few people live on the little island, including Irina and Pavel (Boyka Velkova and Rousi Chanev), a couple in their fifties who are the main reason that the place quickly stops being so idyllic.

Kalev's team is already on the tiny island near the Bulgarian city of Burgas and while some sequences will be filmed in Paris and Sofia, most of the nine-week shoot will take place on St. Anastasia (formerly known as the Bolshevik Island), a place very familiar to the director who spent his childhood in the region.

The Island is produced by Kalev's company Waterfront Film and reunites the team of his first feature, Eastern Plays [+see also:
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(European Parliament LUX Prize 2009 competition). Sweden's The Chimney Pot is co-producing.

The film received €240,000 from Eurimages, while the Bulgarian National Film Centre, public broadcaster BNT and Sweden's Film i Väst also helped round out the €1.5m budget.

The Island is expected to be completed by April 2011 and could screen at Cannes, like Eastern Plays, which premiered in 2008 in the Directors' Fortnight sidebar. Kalev’s debut feature won numerous trophies at home, as well as at international film festivals such as Bratislava, Warsaw and Tokyo. It was also one the three short-listed films competing for the Lux Prix of the European Parliament last year and in July it was elected Best Domestic Film of 2009 by the Bulgarian Film Academy.

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