Jan Fantl - News Poster


Jan Fantl boards Orphans Of War

  • ScreenDaily
Producers Gina G Goff of Goff Productions and Rene Sheridan are pleased to announce the addition of

German-based Jan Fantl has come on board to serve as executive producer on the action adventure alongside producers Gina G Goff of Goff Productions and Rene Sheridan.

Fantl is an 11-year member of Cinema For Peace and will serve as executive producer alongside Sophie Milton Wright, who adapted the screenplay from Jock Brandis’ novel The Ship’s Cat.

Orphans Of War takes place during the Nigerian Civil War in 1969 as a group of strangers lose a battle but find redemption through a rescue mission.

“The courage of these mercenaries and idealists who smuggled food and medical supplies into Biafra, all while smuggling out dying babies and children, will make this an unforgettable movie with great international and award appeal,” said Goff.
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Dracula Re-Imagined as World War II Story Fangs of War

  • shocktillyoudrop
London and La based Stealth Media Group is going to introduce a new project to buyers at the 2012 Berlin Film Market entitled Fangs of War.  Jim Donovan (ProvocateurPure) will direct from a script by Geoffrey Gunn (Siren).  Shooting is expected to begin this June.

The film re-imagines Bram Stoker's classic title as a World War II tale, where the Nazis and Allies vie for control of Count Dracula and his legendary powers. The film is being set up as a Canadian, Chinese, German Co-production produced by Ken Nakamura, of The Nakamura Group Advantage Inc. out of Canada,  Jan Fantl of Seaside Pictures/ Cine-Plus  out of Germany and Fang Yi Ning and Nicholas Peng of Cfi Film Fund out of China, where Emei Film Group will also handle Chinese distribution.

Here's a synopsis to chew on until then...

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Tristan & Isolde

Tristan & Isolde
"Tristan & Isolde" suffers from a bad case of anemia. The ancient Celtic romance of forbidden love, later transformed by Anglo-Norman and German writers into the courtly literature of lies and delusions, has been reduced here to a sappy Dark Ages soap opera interrupted by brutal battles and dialogue of astonishing prosaic deadness. At its core is a pair of lovers no contemporary audience could possibly care for, and at the periphery are characters that threaten to become interesting but never quite do.

"O, what have I done?" wails one lover, and director Kevin Reynolds and writer Dean Georgaris ("The Manchurian Candidate") might be asking the same question. Reportedly, this was a "dream project" for exec producers Tony and Ridley Scott, who nevertheless handed it off to another filmmaker. Perhaps there's a lesson in this: Dream projects delivered to others cease to be dreams and become mere projects. Boxoffice outlook for Fox might bring new meaning to the term Dark Ages. International and home video business looks more promising.

Drifting far from its source material -- but then who other than a medievalist would care? -- "Tristan & Isolde" is a thoroughly contemporary "epic" about a guy with the hots for the wife of his mentor/savior/king/father figure. Think an early draft of Arthur, Lancelot and Guinevere.

After the fall of Rome, Irish warlords have divided and conquered the English tribes. Lord Marke (Rufus Sewell) seeks to unite those tribes against the Irish with the help of his No. 1 warrior Tristan (James Franco in a performance that can only be called inert). A clever ambush results in a resounding victory for the English, but at the cost of the apparent death of Tristan.

His body is shoved into the Irish Sea on a burning funeral pyre, and that's that. But wait! He's alive and washes ashore in -- would you believe it? -- Ireland with a nasty gash on his tummy. His rescuer is none other than Isolde (Sophia Myles), the daughter of King Donnchadh (David Patrick O'Hara). The medieval world was indeed a small one.

Without revealing her identity, Isolde nurses him back to health, takes him to her bed, puts him in a sailboat and, voila, he's back home without anyone asking the most obvious question: Where have you been the past few months? So Tristan has no idea who his savior is, and Isolde has no idea that it was Tristan who conveniently slayed the brutal general to whom she had been so unwillingly betrothed.

Instead of reinvading England with a depleted army, the wily Irish king comes up with another divide-and-conquer trick: He promises his no-longer-engaged daughter in a tournament among the English tribes that looks like the medieval equivalent of a bum fight. Wouldn't you know it, the recovered Tristan wins the tournament, unwittingly securing his lover's hand in marriage for his king, Lord Marke. Talk about missing the mark!

The problem here is that no one, with the possible exception of cinematographer Arthur Reinhart, brings this world to life. The film is like a Monty Python movie with the jokes removed. Reynolds has Franco mope around like a boy who has lost his puppy. Myles fares better as she is beautiful and smart but has little to play against. Sewell, O'Hara and Mark Strong as a conniving tribal leader play characters vastly more interesting than the leads.

Then there is the dialogue. Isolde to Tristan on her wedding night: "I'll pretend it's you". Marke to Tristan in the glow of connubial bliss: "I didn't know how empty I was". Isolde to Tristan: "Why does loving you feel so wrong?"

Reinhart drains away any bright colors, any reds, greens or blues, in favor of earthen tones. This suits designer Mark Geraghty's glum fortresses and rude hovels. Anne Dudley's score is a tad mournful but, hey, this is Tristan and Isolde.

To paraphrase Isolde, why does everything in this film feel so wrong?


20th Century Fox

An Apollopromedia-MFF (Tristan and Isolde) Limited Stillking-Qi Quality International-Co-Production of a Scott Free production


Director: Kevin Reynolds

Screenwriter: Dean Georgaris

Producers: Moshe Diamant, Elie Samaha, Lisa Ellzey, Giannina Facio

Executive producers: Ridley Scott, Tony Scott

Director of photography: Arthur Reinhart

Production designer: Mark Geraghty

Music: Anne Dudley

Co-producers: Anna Lai, Jan Fantl, Morgan O'Sullivan, James Flynn

Costumes: Maurizio Millenotti

Editor: Peter Boyle


Tristan: James Franco

Isolde: Sophia Myles

Marke: Rufus Sewell

Donnchadh: David Patrick O'Hara

Wictred: Mark Strong


Henry Cavill

Bragnae: Bronagh Gallagher

MPAA rating PG-13

Running time -- 126 minutes

Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2

Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2
If anyone was clamoring for a follow-up to 1999's Baby Geniuses, they'll be happy to know that the sequel retains not only the same gimmicky premise as the original but its preference for cliche-ridden dialogue and flat-footed comedy as well. In this U.S.-German-U.K. co-production, once again CGI and impressive baby wrangling give us diapered heroes who speak to one another in complete sentences reflecting keen intelligence. And once again the less-than-compelling story line is a flimsy excuse for the toddlers' banter.

Director Bob Clark has corralled a bunch of flavorless, stiff performances in the service of this cause. The exceptions are the cute-but-not-cutesy kids and a dummkopf turn from Jon Voight -- stepping into the role of villain after exec-producing the first film (a negligible difference, some might argue). Anyone who derives side-splitting merriment from the sight of little kids spouting action-film jargon or using the word "elucidation" should run, not walk, to their local multiplex -- not least because it's unlikely that Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2 will be in theaters long.

Leo, Myles and Gerry Fitzgerald, the triplets who starred in the earlier film, return as legendary superhero Kahuna, a perennial 7-year-old who defends children in distress. Back in 1962 East Berlin, at a state orphanage, he crossed paths with the evil Capt. Kane (Voight), whose goal was world domination. Redubbed Bill Biscane, the Teuton surfaces in the present day as -- what else? -- a media mogul.

Using mind-altering satellite signals, the goofily power-mad Biscane aims to rule the planet through his gargantuan children's television network. It takes a baby genius to see that the venture is a front; the grown-ups are too busy being dim.

Of particular dimness is Stan Bobbins (Scott Baio), proprietor of BobbinsWorld child-care center, which will serve as ground zero for Biscane Broadcasting. His wife, Jean (Vanessa Angel), is convinced that the tots in their charge are not merely gurgling but communicating. Among them is their son, Archie (Michael and Max Iles), who spends his days kibitzing with three other babies and trying to save BobbinsWorld from the no-goodniks -- while getting zero quality time with Mom and Dad.

Hot on Biscane's trail is the Kahuna, brandishing Bondian gizmos, chopsocky moves and a chartreuse energy drink that turns him into a mini-muscleman, a la Popeye's spinach. Babies and corporate thugs face off at the superkid's compound near the Hollywood sign. A sugar-hued phantasmagoria of holograms and glitter, the would-be kids' paradise comes across, in the film's flat lighting, as a cheesy set.

Voight makes the German-accented baddie far less cringe-inducing than one might expect. And whether intentional or not, the Fitzgerald triplets bring an appropriate melancholy to the role of the Kahuna. He bears the responsibility of saving the world's children and protecting his own heavy secret: A creepy Cold War back story reveals that he's an old man trapped in a child's body. Still, character and logic are beside the point in a film devoid of emotional content. It's all about the combination of adorable kids and visual f/x (by Dynamic Effects and Digital Energy).

There also are a few tacked-on, utterly unconvincing messages about family togetherness. And Gregory Poppen's script strikes a trite anti-TV stance, equating the small screen with child-rotting junk. How this questionable franchise makes a case for the movies as a superior medium is anyone's guess.


Sony Pictures Entertainment/Triumph Films

A Crystal Sky World Wide Sales and Hador/ApolloMedia presentation


Director: Bob Clark

Screenwriter: Gregory Poppen

Producer: Steven Paul

Executive producer: Frank Hubner

Director of photography: Maher Maleh

Production designer: Deren P. Abram

Music: Helmut Zerlett, Paul Zaza

Co-producers: Jan Fantl, David Marlow

Costume designer: Tina Fiorda

Editor: Stan Cole

Visual effects supervisor: Jacques Stroweis


Bill Biscane: Jon Voight

Stan Bobbins: Scott Baio

Jean Bobbins: Vanessa Angel

Kylie: Skyler Shaye

Zack: Justin Chatwin

Crowe: Peter Wingfield

Kahuna: Leo, Myles and Gerry Fitzgerald

Archie: Michael and Max Iles

Finkleman: Jordan and Jared Scheideman

Rosita: Keana and Maia Bastidas

Alex: Joshua and Maxwell Lockhart

Tascha: Anastasia Trovato

MPAA rating: PG

Running time -- 88 minutes

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