On 29 March 2017 the British Prime Minister Theresa May activated article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union. This marked the start of the negotiations that would pave the way for the UK to leave the European Union.
The Frenchman Michel Barnier was put forward by the EU-27 to lead the negotiations for the European Union. Mr Barnier was given a strict deadline: the UK must have left the EU by 29 March 2019.
The Belgian documentary-maker Alain de Halleux was given permission to follow Mr Barnier during the two years of the difficult Brex Negotiation process. The result is the documentary “Brexit: The clock is ticking” that will be shown for the first time on Canvas on Friday evening.
The 1 hour and 35 minute long documentary follows Mr Barnier as he visits numerous EU member states and shows him encounter numerous problems. The programme also shows Mr Barnier report to high-ranking EU official and interact with his negotiating team. There is sometimes joy as a breakthrough appears to have been made. However, more often than not there is frustration at the lack of progress.
A unique documentary
Initially the documentary-maker was given permission to meet with Mr Barnier for half an hour every month to interview him about the progress of the talks. However, things start to get really interesting when Alain de Halleux is given permission to follow Mr Barnier all over Europe as he meets EU leaders.
The climax comes on 14 November 2018 in Strasbourg when an agreement is reach between the EU and the UK government. However, joy soon turns to frustration and disappointment as the deal is voted down by British MPs in the House of Commons.
“Brexit: The clock is ticking” is on Canvas at 8:25pm on 12 April.
Those with something else to do on Friday evening can watch it on our catch up service VRT NU