Today we’re buying an Airplane

In this film, director Robert Oey unveils the process of the Dutch purchase of the Joint Strike Fighter, the new fighter plane. Starting in the beginning of the nineties and ending with the final decision by the Dutch Minister of Defence.


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Robert Oey

Robert Oey (1966) studied English, Modern History and American Studies at the University of Amsterdam. After receiving his master degrees he started working for various feature film productions, such as the international co-productions Not Mozart and The Baby of Macon, by British filmdirector Peter Greenaway. In 1995 Oey is assigned to write a documentary scenario on the sixties in the Netherlands. Between 1997 and 1999 he does research for several documentary filmmakers. In 1999 Oey produces and directs his first feature length documentary Giftig (Toxic). In 2004 Wonderland (2004) is broadcast by the Dutch public broadcaster VPRO. It’s both a personal and political account of growing up in the Netherlands in the seventies and eighties. In 2006 Oey directed De Zwemmers (The Swimmers), a documentary on the visitors of a swimmingpool in Amsterdam. In 2008 Oey directs a documentary series titled Safety First, about the stringent safety measures taken by governments and airlines to safeguard the lives of passengers and personel. Safety First is shown at the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR). In 2007 Oey photographed the making of the first creole opera Le Mariage Lenglensou, an opera performed in rural villages in Haiti. His photographs were exhibited in the Institut Français in Port-au-Prince and appeared in the Dutch weekly Vrij Nederland. In 2009 Oey started filming De Leugen (The Lie), a musical documentary on a politicial affair concerning the alleged lies of Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Hirsi Ali is a former Somalian refugee who was granted citizenship in the Netherlands, became a Member of Parliament and who eventually left the Netherlands for the United States. The Lie was released in September 2010. According to the Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant The Lie is: ‘must see cinema’. In 2012 Gesneuveld (Fallen) premiered at the Dutch Film Festival. The film tells the stories of the next of kin of the 25 Dutch servicemen who lost their lives in Afghanistan. In 2014 he is commissioned to direct a documentary on what is called by many both the most expensive and the most useless weapons system ever to have been developed: the Joint Strike Fighter. Vandaag kopen we een Vliegtuig (Today we buy an Airplane) premiered on May 20th in Zutphen, the Netherlands. De Missie about the UN involvement in the West-African country Mali (The Mission) is his seventh feature length documentary. He is currently developing a documentary on the incarceration of terrorists in a Dutch prison.


Director: Robert Oey

Camera: Rogier den Boer

Producers: Annemiek van der Hell, Judith Vreriks

Producer: Frank van den Engel

Commissioning Editor NCRV: Jelle Peter de Ruiter