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Nova Zembla is a 2011 Dutch historical drama film directed by Reinout Oerlemans. It is the first Dutch feature film in 3D.[1]

Nova Zembla
Directed byReinout Oerlemans
Produced byHans de Weers, Reinout Oerlemans
StarringRobert de Hoog
Derek de Lint
Doutzen Kroes
Release date
  • November 24, 2011 (2011-11-24)
Running time
108 minutes

The film describes the last journey of Willem Barentsz and Jacob van Heemskerk through 1596–1597 when they and their crew tried to discover the Northeast Passage to the Indies. However, due to the sea ice, they are stranded on the island of Novaya Zemlya and have to spend the winter there in Het Behouden Huys (The Safe Home). The story is told through the eyes of Gerrit de Veer, and is loosely based on a diary he published in 1598 after his safe return.[2] Gerrit is portrayed as having a relationship with Catharina Plancius, the daughter of the astronomer, cartographer and reverend Petrus Plancius, who pioneered the concept of the North East passage to reach the Indies. The Novaya Zemlya effect, first described by De Veer, is shown in the film, albeit in a non-historical fashion.


Filming locationsEdit

The film was filmed on location in Iceland, Belgium, Canada and the Netherlands. The scenes set in Amsterdam were filmed in Bruges.

Critical responseEdit

According to Variety, the screenplay was "too light on historical background and character development," while the movie was "coming off as a technically competent but narratively uninvolving History Channel-like reenactment." The acting was considered "weak."[3]


The musical theme of the movie was remixed by Dutch DJ and producer Armin van Buuren.[citation needed]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Vijn, Ard (2011-10-15). "A Trailer For Dutch Epic NOVA ZEMBLA". Twitch Film. Retrieved 2011-10-17.
  2. ^ The true and perfect description of three voyages : so strange and woonderfull, that the like hath neuer been heard of before: done and performed three yeares, one after the other, by the ships of Holland and Zeland, on the north sides of Norway, Muscouia, and Tartaria, towards the kingdomes of Cathaia & China; shewing the discouerie of the straights of Weigates, Noua Zembla, and the countrie lying vnder 80. degrees; which is thought to be Greenland: whereneuer any man had bin before: with the cruell beares, and other monsters of the sea, and the vnsupportable and extreame cold that is found to be in those places, London, 1605, English translation by William Phillip
  3. ^ Review: 'Nova Zembla', Variety, 1 January 2012
  4. ^ (in Dutch) Eerste Nederlandse 3D film op NFF

External linksEdit