Sophie Lowe and Louisa Krause are set to star in elevated survival thriller, The Dive, from rising German filmmaker Maximilian Erlenwein. Principal photography on will commence in mid-August on location in Malta and Germany.
The official logline for The Dive reads as follows, according to augenschein: “A dive at one of the world’s most remote spots becomes a fight for survival for sisters Drew (25) and May (30), when rocks tumble into the sea after a landslide, trapping May in the deep. As their oxygen runs low, Drew is forced to make a decision on life and death all by herself, with no help in sight…”
The film is the first to emerge in a new slate stemming from a partnership between augenschein Sales and production, finance and sales outfit Protagonist Pictures. The two firms will co-represent worldwide rights on The Dive, as well as future select feature film titles that which capitalize on augenschein’s own strong slate of English speaking films.
As part of the deal, Protagonist Pictures will serve as Executive Producers of the films, working in partnership with the augenschein team to source additional finance for the projects covered under the strategic arrangement.
The two companies will invest a portion of the funds generated by this sales partnership into the co-development of select projects, with the aim of building a co-production slate. The strategic alliance is not fully exclusive and will not prevent augenschein continuing to work with other partners.
“We are absolutely thrilled to collaborate with the fantastic team at Protagonist and pool our resources and knowledge to create a best-in-class slate of films for the international marketplace.” says augenschein CEO and producer, Maximilian Leo. “It’s the best of both worlds as we enhance the international landscape with the signature styles and voices of today’s brightest filmmakers.”
“The super talented augenschein team exemplifies the creative and business approach to successful and contemporary filmmaking.” said Protagonist Pictures Head of Sales, George Hamilton. “We are thrilled to be able to combine our collective strengths to launch original stories and voices into the global market but also to collaborate in developing them.”
Erlenwein is known for the crime-thriller, Stereo, which had its world premiere in the Panorama section of the 64th Berlin International Film Festival, and was subsequently acquired by Netflix.
Leo will produce The Dive alongside Jonas Katzenstein for augenschein, whose own Jonathan Saubach and Philipp Stendebach will exec produce next to Protagonist’s Dave Bishop, Luane Gauer, George Hamilton and Janina Vilsmaier.
Production is being financed by augenschein with the support of Film-und Medienstiftung NRW, Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein and MFG Film Fund.
The director of photography is the internationally-renowned Frank Griebe (Cloud Atlas, Perfume, Run Lola Run) who is supported by Jan Hinrich Hoffmann (Darkest Hour, Unknown Identity, Mute), one of the world’s best specialists for underwater cinematography. Special effects will be handled by VFX studio LAVAlabs, who also provided the special effects for augenschein’s 7500.
Saubach, augenschein’s Head of Sales stated: “Both augenschein and Protagonist bring a high-level of expertise to the worldwide distribution arena, with the skill and know-how to maximize the sales potential worldwide. Protagonist is the perfect match for The Dive and I look forward to much success working closely with Dave Bishop, George Hamilton and their dedicated team on this film and many more to come.”
“As we continue to work with new directors for English-language projects, we are so excited to team up with Maximilian Erlenwein who is such an enormous talent.” said augenschein CEO and producer Katzenstein. “He is not only an exceptional filmmaker but is also an experienced diver – we cannot wait to see his vision for The Dive as he brings this underwater thriller to life.”
“With The Dive, Max takes the viewer on an immersive journey of survival where the human body and mind are pushed to the limit, filled with breathtaking action and from the perspective of two female leads with rich character arcs. This film marks the start of the augenschein/ Protagonist partnership with a big splash!” added Protagonist Pictures Head of Acquisitions, Luane Gauer.
Lowe most recently starred in Amazon’s Blow the Man Down, which debuted at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival, where it was awarded Best Screenplay. She appeared opposite Emilia Clarke, Jack Huston and Thora Birch in Phillip Noyce’s Above Suspicion, and co-starred with Charlotte Rampling and Willie Nelson in Lian Lunson’s Waiting for the Miracle to Come.
Krause’s feature credits include the Sundance and Berlinale Selection Cryptozoo, an animated feature starring opposite Lake Bell and Michael Cera, Berlinale Panorama Official Selection Skin, starring opposite Jamie Bell and Danielle McDonald and Todd Haynes’ Dark Waters appearing opposite Mark Ruffalo and Anne Hathaway. Her television credits include a recurring arc on Showtime’s Emmy Award-winning series “Ray Donovan”, the Starz series “The Girlfriend Experience” and Showtime’s “Billions”.
Wild Bunch will release The Dive locally in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and France. German free TV is licensed by ZDF.