Austrian pubcaster ORF joined epic Central European television production “Rise of the Raven” as co-producer. Produced by Robert Lantos, shooting for the series is underway near Budapest with more than 600 actors and stunt people in front of the camera.
The series stars Hungarian discovery Gellért Kádár as Janos Hunyadi, the army commander who defeated the vast Ottoman troops in the Battle of Belgrade in 1456. He is also for whom the noon bells toll at churches across the world to this day. Opposite Kádár is Hungarian TV, film, and stage star Vivien Rujder as Hunyadi’s life partner Elizabeth Szilagyi.
A stellar international cast joins them, including Austria’s Laurence Rupp, Cornelius Obonya, Murathan Muslu, Italy’s Francesco Acquaroli, multi-awarded Czech actor Karel Roden, Serbian star Rade Serbedzija, as well as Italian actors Thomas Trabacchi and Elena Rusconi. Directors are Oscar-nominated and Emmy winning Robert Dornhelm, and Hungarian directors Orsi Nagypal and Attila Szász. The series’ showrunner is Balázs Lengyel, and it is written by Lengyel, George Mihalka, Balázs Lovas, Zsófia Ruttkay, Attila Veres, and Bán Mór, whose best-selling series of novels the show is based on.
“We share a common history with our neighboring nations and dramatizing historical events and the lives and deeds of great personalities on film is truly exciting. I am very pleased that ORF is part of this great international production 'Rise of the Raven,' which recounts the tale of legendary general János Hunyadi for TV audiences in a visually stunning and captivating series – directed by Robert Dornhelm, and featuring an outstanding international and Austrian cast with names like Laurence Rupp, Cornelius Obonya, and Murathan Muslu. I wish all participants in front and behind the camera all the best for this most impressive screen epic," said Roland Weißmann, Director General at ORF.
“Through international cooperation, we can accomplish productions that would not be possible otherwise on such a scale, and to also contribute an Austrian element. That we are part of this major production despite being a relatively small country fills me with pride. I thank our partners and wish everyone – above all master director Robert Dornhelm – great success with Rise of the Raven,” added Stefanie Groiss-Horowitz, Program Director at ORF.
The ten-hour epic series, a panoramic celebration of medieval times, is financed by the National Film Institute of Hungary and Beta. It is produced by Serendipity Point Films, Twin Media, HG Media, MR Film, and Beta. Coproducers are Hungary’s TV2 Network, who will broadcast the in Hungary and Slovenia, and now ORF, who will broadcast in Austria.
Through international cooperation, we can accomplish productions that would not be possible otherwise on such a scale, and to also contribute an Austrian element” Stefanie Groiss-Horowitz Program Director at ORF