Berlin-based production house TwentyTwenty Vision will be the German co-producer on Iranian-British director Rafi Pitts' fifth feature The Hunter.
Speaking exclusively to Screendaily.com, Pitts explained that the drama will be produced by AMA Media Productions - which co-produced his 2006 Berlinale competition film It's Winter (Zemestan) - and Aftab Negaran Productions, the production company of the 2006 Berlinale Forum film Men At Work by Mani Haghighi.
Support was granted for the film last year from the Berlinale's World Cinema Fund. That support helped Pitts and his producers make contact with TwentyTwenty's Thanassis Karathanos (The Drummer, Restless) at the Berlinale Co-production Market in February. In addition, the project was awarded production funding by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg this week.
According to Pitts, The Hunter 'centres on an act of vengeance: a young man takes out two policemen and escapes to a forest where he is later caught by another two policemen. They are lost in the forest which is like a maze, only this maze is straight ahead.'
The film will begin shooting for 60 days in Tehran and the Talesh region in the north of Iran from the end of October. 'The weather changes frequently in the northern forests so we have given a month for the third of the film in the forest and another month for two-thirds of the film set in Tehran,' Pitts said.
He added that he will be shooting with non-actors and aims to use the same crew he worked with on It's Winter. He also plans to cast the same lead actress Mitra Hadjar. Pitts commented 'She is very well known in Iran and I would like to draw those Iranians into the cinemas that wouldn't necessarily otherwise go and see this type of film. It worked for It's Winter, so let's see if it works for The Hunter.'