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(I Phone Y(o)u)

Front: Jian Yiyan, Zhao Ying Ying, Deng Jia Jia/Back: Dan Tang, Peter Schwartzkopff (photo © Reverse Angle Production GmbH/Peter Hartwig)

Production Report featured in
German Films Quarterly 03/2010

“I have now known Wolfgang Kohlhaase for some 30 years,” recalls producer Peter Schwartzkopff, who graduated from Babelsberg’s University of Film & Television (HFF) in 1974.

“At one point, we had worked together on developing a project about Konrad Wolf and, over the years, kept on looking for a project to do together. Then, three years ago, he came to me with the story idea for I Phone Y(o)u (working title),” he continues.

Through Kohlhaase, he met the young female Chinese filmmaker Dan Tang, who studied at the HFF from 2003 to 2007, and they all worked together on developing the treatment into a screenplay and finding a co-production partner in China.

In her mid-20s, Ling works for a florist’s shop delivering flowers dressed in a clown’s costume in the metropolis of Chongqing when one day she meets a Chinese businessman, Yu, who is visiting from Berlin. As a parting gift, he gives her an iPhone and they begin a tender long-distance affair by phone. Eventually, she decides to travel to Berlin to see Yu, but is met at the airport by his bodyguard and chauffeur Marco. There is no sign of Yu, and Marco’s job is to show her Berlin and then ensure that she catches the next flight back to China. But events take an unexpected twist....

“Wolfgang’s very special laconic humor which we know from such films as Summer in Berlin is very much present in this new screenplay,” Schwartzkopff notes, pointing out that the Berlin appearing in the film will not be the usual ‘picture postcard’ option taken by many films set in the capital. “You will be able to recognize Berlin, but we want to find other images which are rather special and serve our story.”

This will be Dan Tang’s first feature film shot in Germany – she had previously directed two features in China, The Autumn for Guoguo (2005) and Dream Team (2007) – and is also Schwartzkopff’s first production with China. His Chinese partner, Wang Yu of Beijing-based Ray Production, has previously worked with such directors as Jia Zhang-ke and Yang Li.

Meanwhile, the role of Ling has been cast with Jian Yiyan who appeared in Nanjing! Nanjing!...City of Life and Death, while German actor Florian Lukas – known to international audiences from such films as Good Bye, Lenin! and North Face – has taken on the role of Marco.

Genre Comedy, Drama
Category Feature
Year of Production 2010
Director Dan Tang
Screenplay Wolfgang Kohlhaase
Cinematography Andreas Höfer
Sebastian Thuemler
Susanne Hopf
Cast Florian Lukas, Jian Yiyan
Co-Producer Wang Yu
Production Company Reverse Angle Production/Hamburg, in co-production with Ray Productions/Beijing, RBB, ARTE, BR
Format 35 mm, color
 Chinese, German, English
Shooting Dates Chongqing/China and Berlin, July – August 2010
Sound Technology Dolby SR
With backing from German Federal Film Board / FFA Filmförderungsanstalt, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, MOIN Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, German Federal Film Fund / DFFF Deutscher Filmförderfonds

Reverse Angle Production
Am Kaiserkai 10
20457 Hamburg/Germany
phone +49-40-80 81 82 83
fax +49-40-80 81 82 84