Shoot date and new cast members announced for Fiennes’ directorial debut

James Nesbitt and John Kani have joined the cast of Ralph Fiennes’ directorial debut Coriolanus, which begins shooting in Belgrade on March 17.

Fiennes, who also stars in the film alongside confirmed cast members Gerard Butler, Brian Cox and Vanessa Redgrave, attended a press conference in the city today where he revealed the reasons behind his decision to shoot in the Serbian capital.

“Belgrade is a unique, substantial capital city. I didn’t want it to be Rome, I wanted it to be a city, today, anywhere. Belgrade has the nature of a capital city in the very fabric of the buildings. I’ve been to Budapest and Zagreb, but to me, it was always Belgrade.”

Services for the shoot will be provided by Belgrade’s Work in Progress, which was instrumental in bringing Endgame Entertainment’s Brothers Bloom and Europa Corp’s District 13: Ultimatum and Human Zoo to film in Serbia.

“When we first came here, we met with the company Work in Progress which has been fantastically efficient and helpful,” added Fiennes.

Also joining the cast of the modern day adaptation of Shakespere’s play will be Paul Jesson, Ashraf Barhom and Jessica Chastain, as well as Serbian actors Slavko Stimac, Dragan Micanovic, Svetislav Goncic and Danijela Vranjes.  Cinematographer Barry Ackroyd and sound mixer Ray Beckett who recently enjoyed success with The Hurt Locker are among the key crew.

Fiennes is producing the film, which he says will shoot on a budget which he describes as “mid sized for a European film” together with MagnoliaMae Film’s Gabrielle Tana, Julia Taylor-Stanley, Colin Vaines and the film’s writer John Logan, who penned Gladiator and The Aviator.

It is being backed by Serbia’s Hermetof Pictures and Magna Films, together with Lip Sync Productions, BBC Films and Icon Entertainment.

Icon is handling international sales and Lionsgate is on board as the UK distributor.