Isa Hoes: ‘With book filming you have to learn to let go of your own story’ | NOW


Shorten chapters, leave out characters or add a whole storyline: a book adaptation is not always an exact copy of what you have already read. Isa Hoes, who wrote the book together with daughter Vlinder Engel saw her story change for the silver screen and actually liked that a lot.

“I wrote the book with Vlinder four years ago and we never had in mind that it would be made into a film later on. So you write things that later prove not necessarily translatable into a film script, or too many storylines together that not all of them fit in an hour and a half. That’s okay, it’s nice that there are now two versions of the story, “said Hoes in conversation with

In the book the girl Engel has a special gift with which she can make wishes of good people come true, in the film it is slightly different: Engel finds a clock and can therefore make the wishes come true. There are even more changes in the script.

“As an actress, I have often played in plays based on books. It does not contain everything and that is simply not possible. Now it was very nice to see which aspects were picked out and enlarged. You get one very special film of it, I am very happy with it. ”

Recordings came to a standstill

August 5 goes Engel as one of the first Dutch-language films premiered since the start of the corona crisis in March. That was not certain at first: due to the crisis, the filming of the film came to a halt, while at least five more shooting days were planned.

“That was really shocking, also because you work with young children and you can not wait for months. They are still growing, so a few months later they can look completely different and that is not convenient for the storyline. Fortunately, we were able to quickly round things up. And you will not see anything of the measures, with screens and 1.5 meters. ”

Hoes herself plays the mother of the main character Engel, but her daughter Vlinder, who is now fourteen, did not want to take on a role. “I was asked by Dennis (Bots, the director, ed.) And then asked Barry (Atsma, who plays Engel’s father ed.) Myself. Vlinder was very clear: it was not necessary for her. At one point she has been on the set as an extra with two friends, but she did that afterwards more for them than for herself. ”


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