A new film set in a French chateau - and starring the real Chateau Clos Fourtet - opens next month in French cinemas.
Tu Seras Mon Fils (You Will Be My Son) deals with the conflict between a fictitious chateau owner and his son.
It was almost entirely filmed at the Saint Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé Chateau Clos Fourtet, and features the chateau’s actual staff as well as established French stars, from director Gilles Legrand to actors Niels Arestrup - who is in Stephen Spielberg’s forthcoming film War Horse, Anne Marivin (Little White Lies), Patrick Chesnais (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) and Lorànt Deutsch.
The 102-minute movie is distributed by Universal Films, and opens in French cinemas on 24 August.
The fictitious estate is called Clos de l’Abbé, but the movie features real life personnel of Chateau Clos Fourtet: harvest workers, tractor drivers and vat room workers – and Clos Fourtet’s technical director, Daniel Allard, who has a couple of lines.
‘He was proud about that,’ said Matthieu Cuvelier, Clos Fourtet owner, who was invited recently to a preview.
Billed as a gripping drama – the Clos de l’Abbé owner prefers to see the son of his general director succeed him rather than his own son – the movie includes ‘beautiful scenery, is well written, and the story flows nicely,’ said Cuvelier.
‘But I am not sure it will be a massive commercial hit.’
Harvest scenes in the film were shot in September 2010, but before the actual harvest at Clos Fourtet because ‘we did not want the filmmaking to interfere with our harvest,’ Cuvelier said.
The harvested grapes shown in the film were actually purchased by the filmmakers.
The film’s director, Gilles Legrand, reportedly fell in love with St Emilion after meeting Clos Fourtet consultant Stéphane Derenoncourt, who first invited him to the estate.
Written by Panos Kakaviatos