In July 2019 the shooting of Coppelia started; an original family film based on the modern translation of classical ballet. In this unique, international production that combines animation and ballet, former Dutch National Ballet's star dancer Michaela DePrince dances the leading role, alongside the Brazilian dancer Daniel Camargo, former principal danser at Dutch National Ballet.
The cast also includes Igone de Jongh, former principal danser with Dutch National Ballet, the former star of the Bolshoi ballet Irek Mukhamedov, former principal dancer and Associate Artistic Director of Dutch National Ballet Rachel Beaujean, the British ballet and television star Darcey Bussell and dancer and actor Jan Kooijman. An international team of designers and animators has been recruited to shape the characters and the story. Choreographer is Ted Brandsen, director of Dutch National Ballet. The film was premiered July 2022 in EYE, Amsterdam.
In this modern fairy tale. The young love between Zwaantje and Frans is threatened by the beautiful Coppelia. She is the creation of Dr Coppelius, a plastic surgeon who seduces the villagers with the idea of perfect beauty. Like everyone, Frans is also enchanted by Coppelia. But the self-willed Zwaantje discovers that Dr Coppelius is mainly interested in evil. In his 'beauty salon' he steals unique character traits. Frans' lovingly filled heart is the last thing he needs to bring Coppelia to life. Zwaantje does everything possible to save Frans from a terrible end.
Coppelia is based on the modern translation that Ted Brandsen made in 2008 of the classical 19th century ballet into the story of the German writer E.T.A. Hoffmann.
Michaela DePrince: "The character I play is that of a very strong, young woman, who cannot be told that you have to be more than you already are. For me it's about believing in yourself and that you don't have to change your appearance because someone else thinks you'll look better or more beautiful. I feel that I really have a connection with her because for me beauty really comes from within, that you have to stay true to yourself and everyone is beautiful no matter what."
The film is a surprisingly imaginative mix of animation, live-action, ballet and music, telling the story of a village startled by the arrival of the evil Dr Coppelius.
... especially young dancers (will) be the ones to jump in the air enthusiastically after seeing this film.
Emphatically inclusive modern fairytale about vanity, with the expressive DePrince as a great leading lady.
About the production
Coppelia is a unique international production and collaboration with Dutch National Ballet. It is directed by Jeff Tudor, initiator of the project in co-direction with the Belgian duo Steven de Beul and Ben Tesseur of Beast Animation. The film will be produced by Submarine (NL/VS), 3 minutes West (GB/NL), Lunanime (BE), MotionWorks (DUI).
The production is made possible by contributions from the Netherlands Film Fund, the Netherlands Film Fund Production Incentive, the Media Fund, the Flemish Audiovisual Fund (VAF), Screen Flanders, Nord Media, Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung, Deutscher Filmförderfonds, Creative Europe Media, The Creative Industry Fund, AvroTros and MDR / Arte.
The film will be released in the Benelux by Periscope Film.