Luc Besson's The Lake gears up for Croatia and Malta
Coming straight from Germany, The Lake, an action thriller by Into the Storm director Steven Quale and produced by Luc Besson, will begin filming in Croatia on Wednesday 17 June before moving to Malta at the end of July.
The film is the most ambitious international production filming in Croatia this year. The shoot will last for 57 days, with two teams filming simultaneously, one in Zagreb and Gorski kotar, and one in Istria.
Sullivan Stapleton (300: Rise of an Empire; Animal Kingdom) stars alongside J.K. Simmons (pictured) – who earlier this year won an Oscar for best Supporting Role in the film Whiplash. Charlie Bewley (Twilight series) and Diarmaid Murtagh (Sons of Liberty) also star in the drama.
The Lake tells the story of a group of Navy SEALs attempting to uncover an immense treasure hidden in a lake in war-torn Bosnia.
“Since there are a lot of underwater sequences, one possibility was to shoot the film in Malta, where they have a water tank facility and where we could build our set,” explains producer Raphaël Benoliel.
“The reason why we opted for Croatia was the favourable experience our line-producer had with Canal Plus’s Borgia in Dubrovnik last year. In the film industry, trust is everything. You always base these decisions on previous experiences, that is how you know that a country is reliable, that you’ve made the right choice. Then of course come excellent locations, the crew and filming incentives.”
The Lake has already started principal photography in Germany at the end of April.
Lake Lokve in Gorski kotar is the lake from the title of the film. “Zagreb stands in for Sarajevo, for instance, transformed into a 1990s war-zone. Shooting at the Zagreb Fair, we would need to recreate what Sarajevo might have looked like in 1995, guided by our Croatian Art Director Ivo Hušnjak,” said Benoliel.
For the total of 57 days of filming in Croatia, Luc Besson’s production company EuropaCorp is projected to spend approximately €7m and will get back approximately €1,3m through Croatia’s filming incentives. Croatian Pakt Media is servicing the production.
The next stop for the production is Malta, where underwater scenes, recreating flooded village of Hum, will be filmed in an underwater tank.