Australian producer/lawyer Rob Gibson has secured German director Marc Schölermann for The Domestique, an action/drama about a veteran pro cyclist who fights his way back onto a struggling team in the Tour de France after he has been banned for doping.

It was not so much Schölermann’s debut film Pathology that moved them to tap him on the shoulder but his car advertisements for Skoda which were shown in last year’s famous cycling event.

“We are huge fans of the Tour de France and love the coverage by the French television guys but it is so clean and beautiful and touristy,” Gibson told Screendaily.

“What Marc shot was the blood, sweat and tears of the race. Those riders are on their bikes for three weeks and travel 3,500 kilometres. It’s a unique event and we want to capture that intensity.”

Schölermann is particularly know for his work on international commercials and is currently working on a project in China.

Gibson has written the script for The Domestique with Matt Teffer and will produce for Known Associates, his Sydney-based production partnership with Australian director Josh Reed.

Gibson hinted that they were in talks with some significant European companies but would not say more. Next year is the one hundredth Tour de France.

Known Associates’ first film was the low-budget horror film Primal, which was privately funded and got a micro theatrical release in Australia and, via IFC Films, in the US.

Known Associates’ development slate includes the surf/crime picture Sons Of Salt, to star Alex Russell, with Adam Schroeder (Zoolander, The Truman Show) executive producing and Sunny Abberton (Bra Boys) directing and producing alongside Gibson.