Star of the blockbuster The Fast and the Furious franchise, Paul Walker, has started shooting his latest action thriller, Vehicle 19, in South Africa. It is shooting on location in and around Johannesburg for five weeks.
Walker also serves as executive producer of the film helmed by South Africa’s Mukunda Michael Dewil (Retribution), who joined the ranks of fellow South Africans Neill Bloomkamp, Sharlto Copley and Gavin Hood when Vehicle 19 made it onto Hollywood’s prestigious 2010 hit list for the year’s ‘best original screenplay’.
The Vehicle 19 cast includes Owen Sejake (Tsotsi, Shake Hands with the Devil), Naima McLean (BBC’s Wild at Heart) and Tshepo Maseko (More Than Just a Game).
Producer Peter Safran (Buried) and Ryan Haidarian, former head of production and development at the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), are producing through their shingles Safran Company and Forefront Media Group respectively. Gary King of Picture Tree Films (which represents Dewil’s commercial work) co-produces and Miles Goodall (Amelia, Retribution) is DOP.
South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has invested in the production.
Vehicle 19 sees Walker’s character Michael unwittingly pick up the wrong rental vehicle, having just got off a long haul flight. He soon realises that he is the target of a police force that will use any means necessary to stop him and the tied-up female “passenger’ he discovers in the trunk, from getting to the courthouse to testify against the corrupt chief.
K5 International is handling all international rights with Rena Ronson at UTA responsible for the North American rights. K5 has already sold Vehicle 19 to Optimum Releasing in the UK, Kinowelt in Germany, MadMen in Australia and Falcon Films in the Middle East.
Dewil’s debut feature film Retribution opens on the Ster-Kinekor theatrical circuit shortly.