Youp van ‘t Hek: Lance a Lot
Youp van ‘t Hek has found the ingredients for a hard-hitting Dutch film which will lift the lid on Dutch corruption. Leon de Winter is writing the script (allegedly).
Yesterday I called in at the office of one Bram Moszkowicz for a meeting with his best friend Leon de Winter who is going to write the script of the film I’m producing about Lance Armstrong. Working titel: Lance a Lot! My other title, Cancer everywhere!, was deemed too crude. Our talk was about the business side of things more than anything els; ie: money. According to Leon, you’re not an intrinsically bad person if you look after number one. Leon would like payment cash in hand. I mustn’t be too Dutch and Calvinistic about this, in Hollywood it happens all the time. Leon is a bit hard up. His latest fairytale VSV is not selling too well.
The paparazzi have been camping on Bram’s doorstep lately so I had to wear a disguise. His advice: come on a motor bike and wear a full face helmet. The password for the intercom was Twan Huys but because I’m a funny person I announced myself as Germ Kemper. Bram and Leon had a good laugh about this. So did Estelle, the receptionist.
Leon wasn’t alone. He was flanked by two Moroccan kick boxers. They don’t talk much, Leon said. We quickly reached an agreement about the money. It was to be delivered in a wine case or a hold-all at the house of Ton Hooijmaker’s mum who’s ga ga. Bram, Leon and Ton go back a long way. A very trustworthy business partner is Ton who could also provide the finance for the film.
The Fortis bank would be a likely candidate but I told Leon I had already made a deal with the Rabo bank. There’s a branch in Brasschaat that’s good for 20 million. I need a disguise to get into the bank as well, and a Ferrari. The password there is Breukink or Boogerd.
Former boss Wijffels brokered the deal on the condition he won’t be in the film. His image as a progressive Christian has to remain intact. No problem, said Leon, whose motto is You pay, we write. Besides, both gentlemen are squeaky clean.
Leon had a chat with Mart Smeets in Brasserie Stempels in Haarlem and he said Michael had told him several times he’d never used anything during the whole of his career. Smeets kept asking and Michael kept denying. And who is Mart not to believe him? The same with Breukink. Leon was wearing a yellow elastic wristband. Nice detail.
It’s going to be a hard-hitting film with room for a few wholly fictitious storylines. The testicular cancer, for instance, will be caused by polluted Ukrainian EPO, delivered by a man who looks a lot like Tcheu La Ling. The script doesn’t explicitly say this but the suggestion is there. Then Lance takes his revenge and wins the Tour seven times. That is the psychological basis of the film.
There is a lot of sympathy for Lance, Leon can’t help it. He always cares about what happens to perpetrators. The promotion of the film will be handled by Eva Jinek who will, of course, cast a critical eye over the proceedings. But with a wink, Leon laughed. I laughed, too.
Filming will take place at Jan van Vlijmen’s villa. Jan is another of Leon’s good friends. Ballast Nedam will make the adjustments to the villa and Mrs Hooijmakers will be in charge of the catering. And all the film stars must drive a Porsche, like Leon. Me, too. But I will come to the premiere on a motor cycle, helmet on my head. It’ll be my way of winking at the whole project.
Youp van ‘t Hek is one of the Netherlands’ best loved comedians and writers
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