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Everybody famous! (Ledereen beroemd!)

Threat advisory: Elevated - Significant risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

How far would you go to get famous?

Marva Vereecken (Eva van der Gucht) is unfortunately named after the famous 1970s Belgian pop star but doesn't really want to follow her namesake's footsteps to the top of the charts. Even though her awful Madonna impersonations place her at the bottom of the local talent competitions, Marva's factory worker father Jean (Josse de Pauw) is convinced she's got the chops to become Belgium's biggest sensation - even more famous than national idol Debbie (Thekla Reuten) - if only she would sing in her native flemish...

Also starring Werner de Smedt as Willy van Outreve, Victor Löw as Michael and Gert Portael as Chantal Vereecken. Written and directed by Dominique Deruddere.

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Bigger than Bigger than Tina with a good dash of Muriel's wedding.

It's funny how a pretty much non-existent country like Belgium can even conceive of having a film industry. After all, how many people speak Flemish? But that hasn't stopped Dominique from whacking out this wacky little ode to showbiz and stage parents. Josse is embarrassingly normal in the under-educated lower socio-economic kind of way that makes you wish that you could pack them all up and transport them off to some foreign land on the other side of the world. That he's living his own suppressed desire to rise above his failures through the glamour of competitive karaoke is obvious. You just wish that he wasn't doing it before a camera.

It's painful but it's funny.

Eva pulls a great Toni Collette in the role of overweight and underwhelming song bird, Marva. Like Josse she bares her character's rather lightweight soul in every number she sings, right up until the big finale when she lets rip with a bit of white soul. You have to visit Belgium to truly appreciate how bland a country can be and how beige a culture can be; for a Belgian singer to have any kind of soul is verging on the miraculous.

If you like the Eurovision Song Contest, you'll love Everybody famous!

Security censorship classification

M (Adult themes)

Surveillance time

95 minutes (1:35 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 22 June 2001 - Sydney Film Festival
Film: 16 August 2001 - Sydney
Film: 11 October 2001 - Adelaide, Melbourne, Perth
VHS rental: 17 April 2002

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A note from the director
When I was a small boy and said I wanted to become a film director, most people living in my village laughed at me. In my youth, what people called "showbiz" was something inaccessible, or worse: it was kind of sinful... now, the situation is inverted. You see parents who are willing to do anything, and I mean anything to get their children to act or sing... becoming a star! That's all that counts for many people today.

Dominique Deruddere

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