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GIFFONI FILM FESTIVAL 2018 - 20.28 july

Sections & Films


Category: Edition 2018

On the tiny island of Morrowland there are only two mountains, a picturesque palace, one house, a grocery store, a set of train tracks and four inhabitants. They lived in peace for many years until one day the mailman delivers a mysterious package - in it, an adorable, baby boy from a far away, unknown land. So the Morrowlanders took in the orphan boy and named him Jim. When Jim turns 10, he discovers he is not from Morrowland and becomes desperate to know who is he and where is he from? As Jim grows older King Alphonse also worries about the day when he will need his own house, for which there is no space on the tiny island. So one day the King commands that Luke, who has become Jim’s best friend, get rid of his beloved steam engine Emma, in order to create room on the island. As Luke doesn't have the heart to break away from dear Emma he quickly decides to leave the island with her without telling anyone. Unbeknownst to Luke young Jim overhears his plans to run away. The boy will convince Luke to leave together and will begin the greatest adventure of their lives.

Category Official Competition
Section Elements +6
Tipology Feature Film
Duration 105'
Production Year 2018
Nationality Germany
Directed by Dennis Gansel
Screenplay Dirk Ahner, Sebastian Niemann, Andrew Birkin
Based on the book "Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver"
by Michael Ende
Director of photography Torsten Breuer
Editor Ueli Christen
Production Design Matthias Müsse, VSK
Costume Design Ute Paffendorf
Music Ralf Wengenmayr
Main cast Shirley MacLaine
Henning Baum
Michael Herbig
Milan Peschel
Solomon Gordon
Annette Frier
Christoph Maria Herbst
Uwe Ochsenknecht
Produced by Christian Becker

 regista Dennis GanselDENNIS GANSEL
Dennis Gansel, born in Hannover in 1973, started shooting his first TV movie THE PHANTOM when he was still a student at Munich film school HFF. It won him a Grimme Prize 2001 and the Audience Award at the Baden-Baden festival. He followed it up with comedy GIRLS ON TOP (2001) starring Diana Amft, Felicitas Woll and Karoline Herfurth. THE DOWNFALL (2004, also co-script) starring Max Riemelt and Tom Schilling won him the Bavarian Film Prize for Best Director. It also won awards in Fajr, the Hamptons and Viareggio. His drama THE WAVE (2008, also co-script) starring Jürgen Vogel earned a Jupiter Award for Best Director, the German Film Prize in Bronze, the Script Prize in Torino and the Special Jury Prize in Istanbul, and was screened at Sundance. His modern vampire movie WE ARE THE NIGHT (2010, also co-script) starring Karoline Herfurth, Nina Hoss, Jennifer Ulrich, Anna Fischer and Max Riemelt, won the Special Jury Prize at the Catalonian International Film Festival in Sitges. In 2012, he shot thriller THE FOURTH ESTATE (also co-script) starring Moritz Bleibtreu and Max Riemelt. In 2016, Dennis Gansel shot his first major Hollywood film, action hit sequel MECHANIC: RESURRECTION starring Jason Statham, Tommy Lee Jones and Jessica Alba.

Director's statement
Jim Button is the novel of my childhood. The first novel which inspired me so much that I wanted to become a storyteller myself. It has been a magical journey to bring Michael Ende’s classic tale to the big screen and I am so proud to share this movie now with the world.


Rat Pack Filmproduktion

world sales
Timeless Films
(United Kingdom)

festival contact
Renate Zylla
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