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Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2015: #13. Maren Ade’s Toni Erdmann

Toni Erdmann

Director: Maren Ade // Writer: Maren Ade

Though many be unfamiliar with her work, which is a pity since both her previous films are available in the US, director Maren Ade happens to be one of the most vibrant new voices in German cinema. Her 2003 debut The Forest For the Trees received a rather hushed festival debut in Germany before going to collect a Special Jury prize at Sundance. Her powerful and exquisite follow-up was 2009’s Everyone Else, which took home the Silver Berlin Bear at that year’s Berlin film festival. Generally taking a long time between projects, we’ve been patiently waiting for her third feature, Toni Erdmann, which was initially announced back in 2012. With filming at last completed, we’re hoping to finally catch a glimpse of the film which we know little about except that it’s about a father trying to connect with his adult daughter. Ade, married to director Ulrich Kohler (Bungalow; Sleeping Sickness) also produces a wide variety of notable titles, including Miguel Gomes’ Tabu and Benjamin Heisenberg’s Superegos. Peter Simonischek of Gotz Spielmann’s Oktober-November stars in the title role.

Cast: Peter Simonischek, Sandra Huller, Hadewych Minis

Production Co.: Komplizen Film, Coop99 Filmproduktion

U.S. Distributor: Rights available.

Release Date: Filming completed in late September, with a shoot that lasted over 50 days and had upwards of 2,000 extras and 50 speaking roles. Clearly Ade’s biggest production to date, it seems unlikely that this would have been readied for Berlin, and Cannes could be a possibility for Ade.

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Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is IONCINEMA.com's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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