Zane enlists for Breuls' WWII pic 'Hessen'


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Billy Zane will don a World War II Army uniform for his role in "The Hessen Affair," the behind-the-lens debut for Belgian producer-turned-director Paul Breuls.

Breuls -- who heads Belgium-based production, financing and international sales company Corsan -- also will bankroll the $20 million-budgeted thriller under his company's banner.

Zane joins Lyne Renee, Michael Bowen and Noah Segan in the film.

"Hessen" is penned by Oscar nominee Nicholas Meyer ("The Human Stain") and Ronald Roose ("Collateral Damage").

Corsan also is handling worldwide sales for the film, which is scheduled to begin shooting Nov. 12 in Canada before jetting back to Belgium and is set to wrap in February.

Breuls said he was pleased that his directorial debut would be based on a script from strong writing talents.

"The script is the base of it all, and there is no doubt that this one is among Nicholas Meyer's best work," Breuls said. "Good scripts attract good actors, and this one is no exception."

Based on actual events, "Hessen" is set in 1945 and revolves around victorious American officers who uncover a stash of German jewels that they smuggle to New York to fence.

Breuls set up Corsan in 1989 and opened a branch office in Los Angeles to focus on the development, financing and production of transatlantic film projects.

Corsan operates in Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, the U.K., Italy, France, Germany and the U.S.