19. Mai 2007

Constantin Film, the leading independent German film production and distribution company, is producing the feature-film drama EFFI based on Theodor Fontane's classic novel EFFI BRIEST. The producer is Guenter Rohrbach (DAS BOOT, THE WHITE MASAI). Beta Cinema is in charge of world sales of this Constantin Film production.

EFFI takes plays in Prussia's upper classes in the late 19th century, a society ruled by rigid conventions. Life-loving 17-year-old Effi is urged by her parents to marry the much older Baron von Instetten. Their union is ill-fated, and Effi rushes into an affair with the irresponsible womanizer Major Crampas. Years later, when Instetten learns of his wife's betrayal, he kills his opponent in a duel, repudiates Effi, and forbids her to have any contact with their daughter.

Volker Einrauch (DAS TRIO) wrote the script to this new screen adaptation of Theodor Fontane's socio-critical novel. Hermine Huntgeburth (THE WHITE MASAI) will direct. The story was last adapted to the big screen in 1974 by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, with Hanna Schygulla as Effi Briest.

Starring in the title role of this new filming is Julia Jentsch (SOPHIE SCHOLL - THE FINAL DAYS); Sebastian Koch (THE LIVES OF OTHERS) plays Effi's conservative husband Barton Geert von Instetten, and Juliane Koehler (DOWNFALL) portrays Effi's mother Luise von Briest.

Shooting begins on 3 September 2007 at original locations in Berlin and Brandenburg. The theatrical release is scheduled for 2008.

Beta Cinema head Dirk Schuerhoff: "After our very successful collaboration on DOWNFALL and THE WHITE MASAI, we are delighted to be taking up another very promising title of Constantin Film in our international sales portfolio."

Beta Cinema is the theatrical sales division of Beta Film GmbH. Launched in 2001, Beta Cinema has established itself as a "boutique-operation" for independent feature films with high theatrical potential. Beta Cinema's philosophy is to keep its selective acquisition policy of 5 to 10 titles per year in order to fully develop the theatrical potential of each title according to its individual character. After the outstanding success of German productions like 2007 Academy Award winner THE LIVES OF OTHERS, Berlin 2007 Competition entry THE COUNTERFEITERS, 2005 Academy Award nominated DOWNFALL or Toronto 2005 Gala entry THE WHITE MASAI, Beta Cinema will continue to pick the most promising German films as well as to offer its service and expertise to international producers looking for individual handling of their productions. Beta Cinema's strength lies in its focus on a carefully selected line-up and development of individual sales strategies with the perfect mix of marketing and festival platforms. Beta Cinema is the alterative address for established and up-and-coming independent producers looking for individual international handling of their projects.

Constantin Film has been one of the most successful producers and independent distributors of feature films in Germany for more than 25 years. The company, which is listed on the stock market since 1999, is also involved in the international production of theatrical films in English as well as TV production (TV movies, series, entertainment formats). The classic production and distribution operations were supplemented successfully in 2004 by licence trading and the internal exploitation of video and DVD rights. Constantin Film's international box-office successes include THE NEVERENDING STORY, THE NAME OF THE ROSE, the RESIDENT EVIL franchise, the Academy Award nominee DOWNFALL and PERFUME - THE STORY OF A MURDERER.