The Painted Bird tells the story of young Jewish boy’s attempts to escape the Holocaust and the abuse he suffers at the hands at would-be rescuers.
Czech filmmaker Václav Marhoul is developing a new adaptation of The Painted Bird, a Holocaust survival tale by Being There author Jerzy Kosiński.
“The Painted Bird affected me, as it did millions of readers worldwide, so deeply that after finishing Tobruk in mid-2008, I decided to devote all of my effort and craft into obtaining the film rights to this masterpiece,” Marhoul said, adding that he and the rights-holder had concluded an option agreement “several days ago.”
The Painted Bird tells the story of young Jewish boy’s attempts to escape the Holocaust and the abuse he suffers at the hands at would-be rescuers. The book was widely praised upon its release in 1965 but later blasted by critics who accused the author of passing off a work of fiction as autobiography. It nonetheless madeTime’s 2005 list of the best English-language novels since 1923.
Marhoul told Screen that hisscript will be in Czech and that principal photography, which will begin in two or three years, will most likely take place eastern Poland, Ukraine or Russia. “In all respects, I can imagine, The Painted Bird will be a difficult project. In any case, we are at the very beginning,” he said.
Hal Ashby’s Oscar- and Palme d’Or-nominated film Being There, based on Kosiński’s novel of the same name, won the author a BAFTA in 1981 for Best Screenplay.
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