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German answer to 'The Office' a movie smash

The Local · 25 Feb 2014, 11:41

Published: 25 Feb 2014 11:41 GMT+01:00

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After its first weekend the movie had already sold 283,497 tickets and brought in over €2.2 million, producers Brainpool announced on Monday.

The film was neck and neck in earnings with the top German release "Vaterfreuden" – a fatherhood comedy.

Five series of writer Ralf Husmann’s sitcom Stromberg have been broadcast over ten years since the show first aired in 2004.

The show follows a fictional German firm called Capitol Insurance and its incompetent boss Bernd Stromberg, a similar role to Ricky Gervais' character David Brent in the UK series which first broadcast in 2001.

Sitcoms inspired by "The Office" have also found large audiences in France and the USA, but "Stromberg" is the first to turn the formula into a successful movie.

The film entered cinemas over the weekend after Brainpool secured €1.02 million in state film subsidies and the same amount again through online crowd-funding.

The €1-million crowdfunding target was raised in just one week, with more than 3,000 fans investing up to €1,000 for a small stake in the film's profits, according to film news site Hollywoodreporter.com.

The movie's plot revolves around the cast going on a company holiday to a hotel to mark the firm's 50th anniversary.

Much of the comedy is based on Christoph Maria Herbst's Brent-like, arrogant boss character trying, and failing, to produce erudite words of wisdom.

Among Stromberg's finest pearls are:

"A boss is like an alarm clock. No-one wants one, everyone hates them, but without one everyone would just sleep."

"You have to forge the customer while he's still hot."

"Why do insurance companies have a lawn in front of the building? So they don't make too much noise when they throw money out the window."

"It was like a world war – only happened once….OK, bad example."

“The best years come after 45, it’s the same as Germany.”

"The truth has little to do with facts. The truth you feel – that's what it's about."

SEE ALSO: Ten best moments from the Berlinale film festival

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