Márta Mészáros's Aurora Borealis will bring social taboo to screen

Márta Mészáros’ newest film project, Aurora Borealis – Northern Light, has been granted production funding to the amount of 580 million HUF by the Hungarian National Film Fund. Director of Adoption (Golden Bear, Berlinale 1975), Nine Months (Prix FIPRESCI, Cannes 1977) and Diary for my Children (Grand Prix Special du Jury, Cannes 1984), Márta Mészáros is once again making a film that examines a social taboo, this time the story of children fathered by occupying Russian soldiers. "If you want to tell the truth, honesty is not enough." – is the motto of Márta Mészáros' current project in production. Living in Vienna, Olga realises that there are secrets and lies in her family past, and she will not be able to put her own life in order until she works out the truth of what really happened. After returning to Hungary, her elderly mother did everything in her power to keep the past a secret from her daughter and lied to her for years, but when she falls into a coma, Olga finds a mysterious photograph and starts to search for the truth… 38-day filming is set to commence in mid-October with the majority of locations in Hungary. The director of photography is Piotr Sobociński Jr., the set designer Csaba Lódi, while the screenplay was jointly written by Márta Mészáros, Éva Pataki and Zoltán Jancsó. Aurora Borealis - Northern Light is produced by Filmteam, the producer is István Major, and co-producer Gül Togay. International cast includes iconoclastic Mari Törőcsik, who has collected awards for Best Actress in Cannes, Chicago, Karlovy Vary and Monte Carlo, alongside Ildikó Tóth, Franciska Törőcsik, Antonio de la Torre, Hary Prinz and Lesław Żurek.

Director of American Rhapsody (2001) starring Scarlett Johansson and Nastasha Kinski, Éva Gárdos has been awarded 60,479,623 HUF by the Hungarian National Film Fund for preproduction on Budapest Noir.
Vilmos Kondor’s crime thriller Budapest Noir: A Novel proved popular with both public and critics when it was originally published in 2008 and has gone on to appear in numerous languages around the world (HarperCollins Publishers).
Preproduction work is soon to commence on this detective story set in the Budapest of 1936. The main protagonist of the tale is Zsigmond Gordon, who goes from crime reporter to detective as he follows a murder trial that leads him to the highest political circles. This bestselling novel has been adapted for the screen by András Szekér. Location scouting, casting and rehearsals are to begin shortly.
Budapest Noir is to be produced by Pioneer Pictures’ Ildikó Kemény (Duke of Burgundy, Houdini, Fleming).

About the novel
A dark, riveting, and lightning fast novel of murder, intrigue, and political corruption, set in 1936 Hungary during the rise of Adolph Hitler and the Nazis in Germany, Budapest Noir marks the emergence of an extraordinary new voice in literary crime fiction, Vilmos Kondor. Kondor’s remarkable debut brings this European city to breathtaking life—from the wealthy residential neighborhoods of Buda to the slums of Pest—as it follows crime reporter Zsigmond Gordon’s investigation into the strange death of a beautiful woman. As Gordon’s search for the truth leads him to shocking revelations about a seedy underground crime syndicate and its corrupt political patrons, Budapest Noir will transport you to a dark time and place, and hold you there spellbound until the final page is turned.

Set in the fall of 1936, Hungarian author Kondor’s atmospheric debut introduces Zsigmond Gordon, the crime reporter for the Evening, a Budapest newspaper. Gordon is less interested in covering the funeral of real-life Hungarian prime minister Gyula Gömbös (who had been “a sincere friend of Italy. And, of course, of Mussolini. And Hitler”) than in investigating the murder of a young prostitute found on a seedy neighborhood street with a Jewish prayer book in her purse. Gordon works his contacts in the police force, including homicide head Vladimir Gellért, who happens to possess a photo of the victim naked, and sleuths his way into the cigarette-littered lair of a voluptuous courtesan known as Red Margo. In classic noir fashion, he even takes a savage beating and keeps on ticking. Fans of Philip Kerr’s Bernie Gunther series (Field Gray, etc.) will find a lot to like.