UK-Poland co-production The Last Witness shoots on location throughout the UK
The Last Witness, a UK-Poland co-production starring Alex Pettyfer (I Am Number Four, Magic Mike, The Butler) and Michael Gambon (Harry Potter, Sleepy Hollow) has finished its principal photography in the UK. Carol Harding will produce while President of Film Poland, Krzysztof Solek and Alex Pettyfer will co-produce.
The film follows Stephen Underwood (Pettyfer), a journalist who uncovers the truth behind the Katyn Massacre of 1940 and how the British and American Governments sought to hide it in an attempt to maintain fragile international relations during wartime.
London based Production Company GFM films is behind the project, with Piot Szkopiak on board to direct the feature. Written by Szkopiak and Paul Szambowski, The Last Witness is loosely inspired by the memoirs of Michael Loboda.
Describing the appeal of the film, Pettyfer details: “I’m excited to explore this historical event in time that most are unaware of. Its relevance in today’s world will hopefully will capture a wide audience.”
Piotr Szkopiak adds: “I am delighted that Alex has come on board. He has exactly the right combination of strength and vulnerability required to portray the troubled but ambitious Stephen Underwood. From our very first discussions, Alex has understood the film and I have really enjoyed developing the character with him to bring out the best in him and his ideas.”
Detailing the shoot, Krzysztof Solek notes: “it has been a fantastic experience to work with such a great talent on both sides of the camera and to bring to the screen the story that is so immensely important for both Polish history and contemporary politics that are currently in a precarious situation.”
Polish co-productions are a booming industry, with recent highlights including TV drama True Crimes and feature film Kick, made with American and Indian Producers respectively. Poland expanded its ties to the international production community by hosting a familiarisation tour for American Location Managers in August.
By filming in the UK, The Last Witness will have accessed a 25% tax rebate, available to any feature film that spends at least 10% of its budget within the country.
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