Laszlo Nemes Feature ‘Orphan’ Sets June Start For Budapest Shoot


Orphan will be Nemes’ third film after Sunset, which world premiered in Venice in 2018, and his Oscar-winning breakthrough Son of Saul, which debuted in Cannes in 2015, winning the Grand Prize of the Jury before clinching Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards the following year.


Nemes co-wrote the screenplay with Clara Royer, who was his writing partner onSon of Saul and Sunset.

The production also reunites Nemes with Son Of Saul and Sunset cinematographer Mátyás Erdély, who was feted by the Society of American Cinematographers and Camerimage for his work on the former picture.


The new film is set in Budapest in 1957, twelve years after the end of WWII and one year after the uprising against the Communist regime.The story follows a young Jewish boy whose mother has raised him in the hope that his father will return from the camps. These hopes are shattered when a brutish stranger appears on the doorstep to take his family back.


The Hungarian-language film is being produced by Ildiko Kemeny and Ferenc Szale of Pioneer Pictures and Mike Goodridge of Good Chaos alongside Nemes.

Gregory Jankilevitsch and Klaudia Smieja-Rostworowska of Mid March Media (MMM) and two time Academy Award nominated Alexander Rodnyansky of AR Content are also producers.

Juliette Schrameck of Lumen (France) and Thanassis Karathanos and Martin Hampel of Twenty Twenty Vision Filmproduktion (Germany) are co-producing.

The film is being financed by Hungary’s National Film Institute (NFI), Mid March Media and AR Content alongside the UK’s Global Screen Fund, France’s CNC, and Germany’s FFA. It is a Hungary-UK-France-Germany co-production.

It marks a first partnership for leading sales companies, Paris-based Charades and Warsaw-based New Europe Film Sales, which will collaborate on the world sales and launch the film to buyers at Cannes.

“We are thrilled to be working with Laszlo on this powerful story. He’s one of the leading auteurs of cinema today and the script of Orphan moved us very much,” New Europe head Jan Naszewski and Charades partner Carole Baraton said in a joint statement. “We are also looking forward to the collaboration between New Europe, Charades and the production team – we are companies who share similar philosophies and have had a lot of mutual appreciation for a long time.”

Executive producers are Yoav Rosenberg of Good Chaos, Gabor Sipos and Judit Stalter of Laokoon, Marcin Czernik and Marcin Łuczaj of MMM, Michael Kupisk of AR Content and JD Zacharias.