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GFQ 1_2013

FAMILY BUSINESS FRAU ELLA World Sales Autlook Filmsales Contact Pantaleon Entertainment photo©PantaleonEntertainment/WarnerBros. photo©BüchnerFilmproduktion GFQ 1-2013 15 IN PRODUCTION Genre Romantic Comedy, Road Movie Category Feature Director Markus Goller Screenplay Dirk Ahner, based on the novel by Florian Beckerhoff Director of Photography Ueli Steiger Cast Matthias Schweighöfer, Ruth Maria Kubitschek, August Diehl, Anna Bederke Pro- ducers Matthias Schweighöfer, Marco Beckmann, Dan Maag Production Company Pantaleon Entertainment/Berlin Original Version German Shooting Dates September-November 2012 With backing from Medien- board Berlin-Brandenburg, German Federal Film Board, FilmFernseh- Fonds Bayern, German Federal Film Fund 30-year-old Sascha has the worst day of his life: his girlfriend Lina announces she’s pregnant, in shock he wrecks his taxi and ends up in the hospital. His pal Klaus says it’s all a stroke of fate, not that Sascha believes it: he feels misunderstood, rejected and punished by life. Sascha shares a hospital room with Ella, a feisty 87-year-old, whose talkativeness gets on his nerves. The fact that she is being forced to undergo an unnecessary operation fires Sascha’s rage and, in an adventurous action, he frees her from the doctors’ clutches and brings her back to his place. Suddenly caught up in the chaos of Sascha’s life, Ella witnesses Lina breaking up with him because, in her eyes, he is not ready for a relation- ship, to say nothing of being a father. Sascha is so wrecked, Ella decides to stay for a while. As this odd couple gets to know one another, Ella realizes Sascha has locked himself in through fear of being hurt. Ella, in contrast, although she has experienced many bad things in her 87 years, has the ability to see with her heart and believe in goodness. They complement one an- other and, despite their limitations and differences, become friends. Ella lets Sascha into her deepest secret: she has a great, genuine, un- fulfilled love: Jason, a US soldier. After the war ended she never saw him again. Sascha and Klaus decide to drive her to France to look for him. An adventurous journey ensues, both guys almost becoming rivals for her friendship! When it comes to an argument, Ella decides to leave them! They meet up again where Jason is supposed to live. There, they find Ella standing in front of the grave of the man she had loved all her life, bidding farewell. It is an encounter that changes everything. On the journey back, Ella dies. But part of her remains: Sascha is no longer afraid. He resolves to change his life and drives to Lina to ask her something important. SK Genre Human Interest Category Documentary Director Christiane Büchner Screenplay Christiane Büchner Directors of Photography Justyna Feicht, Thomas Plenert With Anne Pacht, Jowita Sobolak, Birgit Pacht, Ulrike Pacht, Oliwia Sobolak Producer Tobias Büchner Co- Producer Mariusz Wlodarski Production Company Büchner Filmpro- duktion/Cologne, in co-production with Lava Films/Lodz, MDR/Leipzig, ARTE/Strasbourg Original Version German, Polish Shooting Dates June 2012-April 2013 With backing from MEDIA, Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, BKM, German Federal Film Fund An observational film, FAMILY BUSINESS is the story of two families brought together by two important aspects of contemporary familial care: time and money. Jowita and her husband Andrzej live in Lublin/Poland. Like many, they took advantage of the good times and started building a house without a loan. Then things turned bad, Andrzej lost his job. Four years later, their 13-year-old daughter Oliwia’s room is still just an empty shell. Needing money, they all decide the mother should now work in Germany. At the same time in Bochum/Germany, another family faces a momen- tous decision: only after their father’s death do Birgit and Ulrike realize just how much help their mother Anne, now 88, needs in everyday life. They spend four long months taking turns, patiently getting her through the day. Finally, they can’t go on. They move the furniture out of the dining room into the lounge, to make room for Jowita. The film accompanies both families from the moment they decide to merge lives. Both experience for the first time what it means to open one’s own family to strangers, to leave previous roles and surrender responsibility. Who does what out of love and where does the work begin? Where are one’s own borders, where those of the unknown others? Where do the sparks fly or the paint rub off on one another? Whilst Jowita knows bet- ter how to estimate Anne’s dementia-related unease than her own daughters, she, Jowita, is suddenly surprised by her own daughter Oliwia’s first love. The situation forces everyone to re-plot their course when it comes to being there for one another. Now surrounded by so many people all concerned about her, and having lived with Jowita for two months, Anne sits back, wrapped toasty warm from head to toe in her wool blanket, and summarizes her situation as she sees it: “I’ve no idea what she’s doing here. I, in her place, would never move in with any old Polish family.“ SK S.15_in_production_Layout 1 25.01.13 09:45 Seite 1