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Hotel Splendide

Synopsis

In spite of a cast list boasting Toni Collette, Daniel Craig, Katrin Cartlidge and Stephen Tompkinson, the real star of Hotel Splendide is the hotel itself. Director Terence Gross and his team spent more than a year searching for the perfect location. They finally found it in the Slieve Donard Hotel in Northern Ireland. "It had all the qualities we were looking for - a fairy tale element, a hint of gothic and was overwhelmingly big to dwarf the staff and guests," says producer Ildiko Kemeny.



Gross sees the Hotel Splendide as embodying the spirit of Mrs Blanche, the late matriarch of the family who still manages the crumbling establishment. "She created a very ingenious heating system that runs off human waste. After her death she has had herself cremated into it and has a kind of presence in the hotel," explains Gross. "It's very Oedipal, with the children still living inside her."



Although the film has what Cartlidge describes as "a European sniff about it" ("it's very unusual for a British film to veer away from naturalism," she says) Gross sees it as carrying a very British message. "The whole film is a metaphor for the way the British settle for less and feel that mediocrity is better than risk," he says. But if that sounds portentous, it is also leavened with an essentially British sense of humour, as outsider Kath (Collette) brings liberating chaos into the suffocating environment of the hotel.



The film, which is Gross's feature debut, was selected for this year's Berlin Film Festival in the Panorama section.

Details

Year
2000
Type of film
Features
Director
Terence Gross
Music
Mark Tschanz.
Dir
Terence Gross.
Exec prod
Robert Buckler.
Co-exec prod
Charles Gassot.
Prod
Ildiko Kemeny.
Scr
Terence Gross.
DoP
Gyula Pados.
Prod des
Alison Dominitz.
Ed
Michael Ellis.
Main cast
Toni Collette, Daniel Craig, Katrin Cartlidge, Stephen Tompkinson, Hugh O’Conor, Helen McCrory, Peter Vaughan.
Budget
£3.2m.
Funding
FilmFour, Studio Canal.

Genre

Production Company

RENEGADE FILMS
92-93 Great Russell Street
London WC1B 3PS
Tel: (44) 20 7691 3060
Fax: (44) 20 7691 3070.

Sales
Company

FilmFour International
(44) 20 7868 7700