Belfast Telegraph

Depardieu 'for kids' fantasy film'

Gerard Depardieu is reportedly being considered to star in a Russian fantasy film for children.

The French actor has been taking sanctuary in Belgium and Russia since quitting his native France in 2012 in a row over taxes.

Screen Daily reported that Gerard, 65, is being eyed by Russian producer Yuri Kuznetsov-Taizhnov of Pervaya Kinostudia (First Film Studio) for children's fantasy film Games Of Time. Exile.

The project, by the newcomer Alexandr Olkov, is about "a little girl from another world arriving unexpectedly in our reality".

The film has a budget set at just 90 million Russian rubles (£1.53 million) of which £848,500 is already in place.

The producer explained in the pitch that the film is intended to be shot in Imax 3D, but he admitted the low budget could mean having to choose between signing French star Gerard, or the high-tech format.

Games Of Time. Exile was one of 15 features looking for production support from the Ministry of Culture at its public pitching for children's feature films. It was one of five selected by the Ministry's expert committee to be forwarded to the commercially oriented Cinema Fund (Fond Kino) for consideration.

Gerard's last big screen English-language role was in Life Of Pi in 2012. Earlier this year he appeared in Abel Ferrara's Welcome To New York, based on the rise and fall of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, which was snubbed by the Cannes Film Festival.

And since moving to Russia he has shot Chechen film Viktor, directed by French filmmaker Philippe Martinez and co-starring British actress Elizabeth Hurley.

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