The Fane Alm, or Fane Alpine Meadow, in the Gitschberg Jochtal skiing and holiday region enjoys great popularity with sightseers, hikers, family holidaymakers, visitors seeking peace and tranquillity, and of course the locals. Filmmakers too are taking an interest in the Fane Alm, known as the most beautiful mountain meadow village in South Tyrol.
Up here in the seclusion of the Vals Valley, time seems to have stopped many decades ago. The little village, made up of meadow huts, is surrounded by blossoming Alpine pastures in summer. In wintertime, the Fane Alm is covered with a thick blanket of snow and surrounded by white snow fields. The well-preserved original wooden structures are in the traditional South Tyrolean style. A small Marian church built in 1898, the Gatterer hut and the many rustic wooden barns are what make the Fane Alm so uniquely charming. The incomparable atmosphere of this outstandingly beautiful place, situated at an altitude of 1,739 m, has already provided the perfect background for several films. These include the drama "Der Judas von Tirol" directed by Franz Ostenin 1933.
Bergdoktor Winter Special 2015 "Schuld"
"Schuld" or "Guilt" is the title of this winter's special Bergdoktor episode, starring the most popular TV physician in the Alpine region, mountain doctor Martin Gruber. The show was filmed on the Fane Alm in March 2014. After a tragic accident caused by an avalanche, the doctor, played by Hans Sigl, escapes from the pangs of conscience he feels, seeking answers in solitude. The idyllic, timeless beauty of the small settlement of Fane Alm provides the ideal backdrop. Around 50 people were involved in the one month shoot on the Fane Alm. Here are some of the things that went on:
© Honorarfrei - nur für diese Sendung bei Nennung ZDF und Stefanie Leo
- The mounting cables for the summit cross on the Gitschberg were removed for helicopter shots. Of course, they were replaced afterwards, but a new cross had to be mounted in summer 2015. It remains to be seen whether that had anything to do with the Bergdoktor filming.
- One of the rustic huts was changed for the episode. The mountain doctor used it to sleep in. Despite the work in progress, the film crew were provided with meals by the local innkeeper. They ate in his Kuttnhütte hut.
- Although there was heavy snowfall in South Tyrol during the winter of 2013/2014, the warm spring sunshine meant that the white slopes beneath the Fane Alm had turned brown. The film crew requested that snow cannons be used to help out Mother Nature, but unfortunately this wasn't possible. Even the most powerful snow cannon is useless without the necessary infrastructure and low temperatures. Gitschberg Jochtal has excellent contacts to the weather gods, and it started snowing again when filming began.
- Filming is a dramatic art. What could be more dramatic than a real avalanche? The film team thought so too, and asked the persons in charge of the mountain lifts to trigger an avalanche. This was in an especially snowy winter, with severe danger of avalanches over several days. The experts responsible considered it too dangerous. The Gitschberg Jochtal lift staff simulated an avalanche field near the mountain restaurant by using snowmobiles to collect large heaps of snow with branches and other material that is usually brought down by avalanches.
- Professional tips for the film medic and vice-versa: The real ski rescue teams in the area drove the film doctor in a Skidoo to the filming location in the skiing area. Naturally, he sat on the Skidoo, and wasn't lying in the rescue sled. Some interesting tips were passed on from the experts to laymen during the activities.
- Local people were also involved in filming. A hiking guide and mountain rescuer from the area doubled for the mountain doctor twice. He was close to having autograph cards printed, but was too modest.
- Vintl mountain rescue were not allowed to participate as helpers during filming, since an exclusive contract was signed between the Bergdoktor team and Elmau mountain rescue.
Anyone who missed the first showing of the Bergdoktor special in December 2014 can buy the DVD as from October 2015.
Barry Morrow's directorial debut "Smitten!"
The film "Rain Man" released in 1988 made Hollywood history. Barry Morrow wrote the script, and it won him an Oscar. However, gave the Oscar to Kim Peek, the real "Rain Man". He is now directing his first film. The son of Minnesota farmers, Morrow had written the script for "Smitten!" 15 years previously. He had the idea during a holiday in South Tyrol in 1999. The film was made during the summer of 2015, and Fane Alm was one of the locations used. "I am a romantic, and this spot is romantic" (Dolomiten, 14th/15th/16th August 2015). Morrow filmed for a 4-week period on the Fane Alm with a 100-strong film crew. Following are some events that took place on the set.
- Some small modifications were made on the Fane Meadow itself. A small cemetery, a bridge and street lamps were set up to emphasise Fane Alm's village atmosphere.
- According to the script, the film's leading man Darren Criss falls in love with Lilly, a local cow. "Smitten!" was the cow's first film appearance, but she made a great job of it. She was trained specially and prepared for the film by Michael Schweuneke, a Munich cow whisperer. Darren Criss, well known from the US TV series "Glee", "American Horror Story" and "Transformers": Robots in Disguise" was full of enthusiasm for the cow. At present the cow is travelling with the film crew for more shooting.
- Barry Morrow loves the scenery and hospitality shown by local people in Gitschberg Jochtal. That's why he celebrated a big party with Gitschberg Jochtal residents. The Vals ladies' "Schuhplattler" group appeared at the party. "Smitten!" will be showing in 2016.