Michiel de Ruyter (2015)


Michiel de Ruyteris a 2015 Dutch film about the 17th-century admiral Michiel de Ruyter directed by Roel Reiné.

It is also known as Admiral and Admiral: Command and Conquer.


When the young republic of The Netherlands is attacked by England, France, and Germany, and the country is on the brink of civil war, only one man can lead the country’s strongest weapon, the Dutch fleet: Michiel de Ruyter (Frank Lammers).


  • Frank Lammers as Michiel de Ruyter.
  • Barry Atsma as Johan de Witt.
  • Egbert-Jan Weber as William III.
  • Gene Bervoets as Van Ginneken.
  • Jada Borsato as Neeltje de Ruyter.
  • Will Bowden as Prince Rupert of the Rhine.
  • Daniel Brocklebank.
  • Hajo Bruins as Cornelis Tromp.
  • Jules Croiset.
  • Charles Dance as Charles II.
  • Lukas Dijkema.
  • Roeland Fernhout as Cornelis de Witt.
  • Tygo Gernandt as Joseph van Ghent.
  • Rutger Hauer as Maarten Tromp.
  • Jelle de Jong.
  • Joost Koning.
  • Youval Kuipers.
  • Isa Lammers.
  • Sanne Langelaar as Anna de Ruyter.
  • Lieke van Lexmond as Wendela de Witt.
  • Derek de Lint as Johan Kievit.
  • Victor Löw as De Waerd.
  • Aurélie Meriel.
  • Filip Peeters as Dequesne.
  • Pip Pellens.
  • Bas van Prooijen
  • Nils Verkooijen.
  • Viv Weatherall.


The film was directed by Roel Reiné and produced by Klaas de Jong. It had a budget of 8 million euro. Among the film locations are Zeeland, Texel, the Wadden Sea, and the Ridderzaal.


Prior to its release, several protest groups had accused the film of glorifying the colonial history of the Netherlands. References to colonialism in the film are however almost absent. The film makes a minor reference to the Dutch East India Company, which contributed highly to the welfare in the 17th century in the low countries, and to the trading vessels which were protected by the navy under Michiel de Ruyter. The film’s main subjects – apart from Michiel de Ruyter himself – are the internal politics of the country, including the brutal murder of Johan de Witt and the complicated relationship with England, up to the engagement of the William III of Orange with the English princess Mary.


  • Paintings from the seventeenth century served as an inspiration for the design. In the beginning of this movie, when Klaartje (Pip Pellens), the family maid, pours milk, it is almost an exact replica of the famous painting “The Milkmaid” by Johannes Vermeer.
  • A special island was created in a lake (Markermeer lake) for filming on real ships.
  • In order to make this movie accessible for school classes and families who want to see it in the theatre, a 12+ version with a few cuts in the most explicit scenes was also released.
  • In the beginning of the movie, there were actual Dutch marines (active service) used as actors for shots on a ship.
  • The British Union Jack flag flown by English ships in this movie may appear to be an anachronism, but is historically accurate.
    • This is the version adopted in 1601 combining the flags of England and Scotland. The modern version of the flag, adopted in 1801, includes the thin red saltire (“x”) of Northern Ireland, which was correctly omitted in this movie.
  • The script development and research took six years to complete.
  • Over ten thousand shots were recorded with four cameras during forty-six shooting days.
  • This movie shows the attack on Maastricht by the French.
    • The city that is shown when zooming out is not Maastricht, but the French town of Carcassonne.
    • The placement of the town is where Amsterdam would be.
  • The smaller ship used in this movie is the Russian frigate “Shtandart”, replica of the man-of-war built by Peter the Great in 1703 in Saint Petersburg.
    • The modern Shtandart was built in 1999 and is a fully-functional training tall ship.
  • The house and the garden that depicts Michiel’s house in Amsterdam, including the view of the small bridge and ports is actually located in Zierikzee, a small town in the province of Zeeland, The Netherlands.
    • The interior shots were largely done somewhere else.
  • During the premiere at the Maritime Museum Amsterdam, a few dozen people protested against “the glorification of a colonial sea villain”, referencing Michiel de Ruyter’s supposed involvement in Dutch slave trading.
  • To cut costs, Executive Producer and Director Roel Reiné filmed the scene where the de Witt brothers are lynched with a mob of four hundred extras, of whom only one hundred fifty wore period costumes.
    • The remaining two hundred fifty wore jeans and dark shirts, but by keeping the crowd in motion and using special camera tricks and editing, they are almost impossible to notice.

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s):
    • Roel Reine.
  • Producer(s):
    • David Claikens … associate producer.
    • Jacqueline de Goeij … co-producer.
    • Jan Goossen … associate producer.
    • Klaas de Jong … producer.
    • Roel Reiné … executive producer.
    • Bernard Tulp … delegate producer.
    • Alex Verbaere … associate producer.
  • Writer(s):
    • Lars Boom.
    • Alex van Galen.
  • Music:
    • Trevor Morris.
  • Cinematography:
    • Roel Reine.
  • Editor(s):
    • Radu Ion.
  • Production:
    • Farmhouse Film & TV.
    • Ciné Cri De Coeur.
    • Grid-vfx.
    • Rebel Entertainment.
  • Distributor(s):
    • A-Film Benelux MSD (2015) (Netherlands) (theatrical).
    • GEM Entertainment (2015) (Non-US) (all media) (multi-territory).
    • AVROTROS (2016) (Netherlands) (TV) (NPO1).
    • Alameda Entertainment (2016) (USA) (all media).
    • Con Un Pack Distribución (2020) (Spain) (video) (VOD).
    • Divisa Home Video (2016) (Spain) (DVD).
    • Dutch FilmWorks (DFW) (2015) (Netherlands) (Blu-ray) (DVD).
    • Film1 (2015) (Netherlands) (TV) (limited).
    • Lighthouse Home Entertainment (2015) (Germany) (Blu-ray) (DVD).
    • Netflix (2016-2017) (Netherlands) (video) (VOD).
    • Signature Entertainment (2015) (UK) (DVD).
    • Twelve Oaks Pictures (2020) (Spain) (all media).
    • WOWOW Cinema (2015) (Japan) (TV).
  • Release Date: 26 January 2015 (Het scheepvaartmuseum, Amsterdam, Premiere).
  • Rating: 15.
  • Running Time: 151 minutes.
  • Country: Netherlands.
  • Language: English.

Video Link

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