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Young sailor gets documentary, drama treatment

Filming has started for projects about 15-year-old Dutch girl Laura Dekker.

Top Dutch producer Pieter Van Huystee is readying two films - one a documentary and the other a dramatic feature - about teenage Dutch
sailor Laura Dekker.

The 15-year-old Dekker (currently midway through her attempt to become the youngest person to sail around the world) and her parents are participating
fully with Van Huystee.

Dekker became the centre of a global media storm in 2009 when Dutch social workers attempted to stop her sailing trip. They protested
that she was too young, insisted she had to attend school and asked for her to be made a ward of court.  Last summer, a Dutch family
court gave her permission to make her voyage. Dekker needs to reach Gibraltar by September 2012 in order to break
the record.

Van Huystee is making the film in collaboration with Peter Wingender of Screentime Entertainment BV.

The filmmakers have already started filming Dekker. They say that their documentary will be intimate and closely focused.

“This is a very young girl and it’s a very special story,” van Huystee said. “She is taking time, enjoying her trip, but also facing all the adventure and trouble of coming of age.”

The filmmakers are not allowed on Dekker’s boat but her boat is equipped with tiny cameras and Dekker is able to communicate intermittently via Skype.

At the same time as they shoot their documentary, Van Huystee and Wingender are preparing a feature film script. They have financed the
early part of the documentary themselves but public broadcaster KRO is reportedly circling the project. The documentary will be available in both theatrical and TV versions.

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