German Crew Shooting Feature Film In Tonga

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Full length movie based on a true love story

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, April 29, 2016) – Filming of new German feature film - a drama based on a true story, has started in Vava’u in April under the direction of a German film maker Florian Schewe, with a crew of about 20 people.

The three leading roles include the noted German actor Sascha Alexander Geršak, with young Luis Pintsch, and Austrian-born Wolfgang Zechmeyer, supported by Tongans who were cast locally.

"So far it is going really well. We are moving between Neiafu and Kenutu Island, except during some rainy weather," Florian told Matangi Tonga today. "The crew loves it here and the actors as well."

The crew is mostly German and Tongan, with the help of two Croatians and an Australian.

"And without the help of the Tongans here we would be totally lost. Every Tongan who played a small role so far were really great, also the Tongans who play a bigger role in the movie, especially because none of them has ever done that before!" said Florian. "We will be filming here until the end of May."

The 90 minutes film with the working title "Paradies" is being shot in two locations, Berlin and Tonga, by zero one film production in co-production with ZDF – Das keine Fernsehspiel and Arte.

The drama is about the struggle of a German social worker Wolski (played by Sascha Alexander Geršak), who wants to give criminal teenagers a second chance. He ends up on an uninhabited island in Tonga in an experiment to rehabilitate Marcel (played by Luis Pintsch), a drug-addicted violent criminal teenager from Germany. Wolski tries to build something up, Marcel tries to destroy it. On a visit to Neiafu, the boy gets into a fight and is arrested. Wolski falls in love with a Tongan woman.

Florian, who has made documentaries all over the world, said this is his first full length feature film and it is based on a true story.

The independent film production company zero one film is based in Berlin, producing cinema and TV documentaries as well as art house fiction for the German and International market.

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great film to expect

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