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'Painted Bird' Holocaust Adaptation to Begin Production in 2015

Czech producer-director Vaclav Marhoul is prepping the $5 million project.

KARLOVY VARY – Czech producer-director Vaclav Marhoul is aiming for March 2015 to start lensing an adaptation of Polish writer Jerzy Kosinki’s controversial Holocaust novel, The Painted Bird.

The book, published in 1965, tells the story of a Jewish boy who wanders in unspecified Eastern European locations passing himself off as a gentile to avoid death at the hands of the Nazis during World War II.

Marhoul, who spent two years negotiating the rights to the book with Chicago publishing house Spertus College of Judaica, says he has raised €2 million of the film’s €5 million budget and is aiming to begin principal photography in Ukraine with completion anticipated by June 2016 due to a complex international shooting schedule.

The film, which Marhoul will produce through his company Silver Screen with Dariusz Jablonski of Warsaw’s Apple Film co-producing, will also lens in Poland and the Czech Republic. French and Israeli partners are also involved. Plans are to distribute the film in 2017.