Upcoming Flix Spotlight: On the set of Coriolanus in Serbia

Thanks to GBGals via Twitter, we’ve got some cool on-set pics of the Ralph Fiennes-directed Coriolanus in Serbia.

GB and Minister Sutanovac

Here’s an excerpt from this online forum (translated from a Serbian news outlet) on the on-set visit of Serbia’s Defense Minister Dragan Sutanovac on April 28:

“I am very pleased that we have helped take this movie, which promotes Serbia,” said Minister Sutanovac, and he expressed hope that Coriolanus achieved notable success in film festivals around the world. He noted that the Ministry of Defense in recent years helped in the implementation of a number of film projects in Serbia and will do so in the future. “This is the promotion of the whole country, and all that is good for Serbia, it is good for the Army. We believe that such activities, inter alia, contribute to the promotion of military call and we are extremely pleased that participate in them.”

The shooting that day took place at the Military Museum in Belgrade.

Click to view larger versions

As I’ve mentioned in my previous postCoriolanus is Ralph Fiennes’ directing debut in which he’d play the title role and Butler is playing his arch enemy Tullus Aufidius. You can see GB in his military uniform, looks like he’s got his Leonidas’ buff physique back! 🙂

So, why Serbia? Well, just last month, Fiennes has this to say (via 30Ninjas blog): “Serbia and Belgrade work for us creatively and financially. It’s been a challenging film to raise money for and there were obviously business interests to consider as we wanted to make a film of some scale. The shooting costs in Serbia are comparatively low and we’ve had considerable assistance and support from the Belgrade authorities. A key location, for example, is the Serbian parliament and its main Senate chamber.

But more importantly than that is Serbia’s grittiness – the bruised battered quality of some of the locations. There are great contrasts in Belgrade between weary Austro-Hungarian architecture, the old communist style and early 20th century neo-classicism.”

Last month, the action flicks-focused blog also posted these two pics of Ralph in full military gear directing the movie.

Fiennes' dual roles as actor & director

The shot below involved tracking the angry crowd as they marched toward the vast grain depositories, carrying protest banners, anti-Coriolanus flags, pots pans and improvised weapons. On arriving at the heavily policed entry gates they beat their weapons on the rusted steel and started chanting: BREAD, BREAD, BREAD! The cry surged through the crowd.

These definitely conjures up images of The Hurt Locker (which Fiennes had a cameo role), though I think the only similarity is that it shares the same cinematographer, Barry Ackroyd.

This modern-day retelling of the Shakespearean play is shaping up real nice. With a cast that also include Brian Cox and Vanessa Redgrave and a script by John Logan (Gladiator, The Aviator), it’s poised to be a powerful indie flick to be reckoned with. Can’t wait to see the trailer soon!