Cast, crew boycott 'Eep!'

Director Rita Horst took name off of film

BERLIN -- The cast and crew of Dutch Generation Kplus entry "Eep!" are boycotting Monday's world premiere in Berlin as a legal battle between director Rita Horst and producers Lemming Film continues to escalate.

The premiere at the Zoo Palast will only be attended by the producers and a Canadian actress in the film, Kenadie Jourdin-Bromley.

Horst has had her name taken off the credits of the film -- it now bears the pseudonym Ellen Smit, a female Dutch version of Allen Smithee, which is also the official listing in the Berlinale catalog.

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The conflict between Horst and Lemming Film dates back from September last year when the director went to court to obtain the right to finish her film in the manner she chose.

Lemming seized control of "Eep!" during the editing process. Apparently, Lemming did not like the first cut of the film, which is based on a Dutch children's novel by Joke van Leeuwen.

The producers hired a new editor to finish the movies and cut about 15 minutes of footage, mainly dialogue. Lemming made the move after a disappointing test screening with the target audience, children between the ages of 4 and 10. The story deals with a middle-aged couple (played by Huub Stapel and Joke Tjalsma) who discovers a little baby with wings that keeps escaping their house.

After losing her case in court, director Horst, who previously directed the highly acclaimed family drama "Romeo," decided to the be involved with the film. She said that Dutch cinema has "lost its soul." Lemming Film declined comment.