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BERLIN 2018 Market / France

French sales agents clean up at Berlin

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- BERLIN 2018: Doc & Film, Memento, Luxbox, Le Pacte and Alpha Violet are selling all the Bear winners bar one, while the other French sellers were not to be outdone either

French sales agents clean up at Berlin
Touch Me Not by Adina Pintilie

The winners’ list of the 68th Berlin Film Festival served to cement the supremacy of the French international sales agents, which are not only negotiating deals for films produced all around the world, but also have an undeniable knack for choosing the most talented filmmakers, judging solely by the seven Bears won by features on their line-ups this year. These accolades will no doubt boost the sales of these titles, which have already been marketed very successfully during the European Film Market.

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With the Golden Bear for Best Film adorning Touch Me Not [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Adina Pintilie
film profile
]
 by Romania’s Adina Pintilie (which also scooped the Best First Feature Award), Doc & Film International is over the moon at having a winner of Berlin’s top prize on its slate again, two years after the triumph of Fire at Sea [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Gianfranco Rosi
film profile
]
Daniela Elstner’s team now has a major ace up its sleeve as it continues to wrap up sales the world over.

Memento Films has again snagged a Silver Bear thanks to Poland’s Malgorzata Szumowska, who this time around won the Grand Jury Prize with Mug [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Małgorzata Szumowska
film profile
]
. Prior to its screening at the end of the festival, the feature had already been sold for Italy (Movies Inspired), the former Yugoslavia (MCF Megacom), Greece (Seven), Turkey (Bir Film) and China (Blueshare/Time-in-Portrait) at the EFM.

Luxbox stood out from the crowd with three awards: the two Silver Bears that were bestowed upon The Heiresses [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Paraguay’s Marcelo Martinessi (Alfred Bauer Prize and Best Actress, for Ana Brun) and the one for Best Script handed to the Mexican film Museum. Interestingly, The Heiresses has already been acquired for the UK (Thunderbird Releasing), Italy (Lucky Red), Spain (Bteam), Scandinavia and the Baltic countries (Edge), France (Rouge International), the Benelux (Contact), Switzerland (Cineworx), Greece (Weird Wave) and China (Time Vision).

Le Pacte will be patting itself on the back for the Silver Bear for Best Actor scooped by Anthony Bajon for his turn in The Prayer [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Cédric Kahn
film profile
]
 by Cédric Kahn, which was produced by Sylvie Pialat and Benoît Quainon for Les Films du Worso. Incidentally, Les Films du Worso and Le Pacte will partner up once again for the next feature by Kahn, Joyeux anniversaire, which will star Catherine DeneuveEmmanuelle Bercot and Vincent Macaigne.

Alpha Violet sealed some great deals for Dovlatov [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Russia’s Alexei German Jr, which was singled out in the winners’ list with a Silver Bear for Best Artistic Contribution (costumes and production design) and has already been acquired by Netflix for all English-speaking territories (the USA, Canada, Australia, the UK and Ireland) and Scandinavia. At Berlin, the feature was sold for a total of 23 territories.

Still in the official winners’ list, Wide House is selling the movie that was crowned Best Documentary: The Waldheim Waltz [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ruth Beckermann
film profile
]
 by Austria’s Ruth Beckermann (unveiled in the Forum section). Meanwhile, Upside Distribution is negotiating deals for the Brazilian documentary Ex Shaman, which was honoured with a Special Mention. 

Lastly, we should point out that Loco Films is selling Fortuna [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Switzerland’s Germinal Roaux, which emerged victorious in the Generation 14plus section.

Furthermore, Bac Films did some great business pre-selling Notti Magiche by Italy’s Paolo Virzi (see the article), as did Memento with The Wild Pear Tree by Turkey’s Nuri Bilge Ceylan, and Wild Bunch did likewise with La quietud by Argentina’s Pablo Trapero.

TF1 Studio racked up some great sales for Just a Breath Away [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by Daniel Roby (starring Romain Duris and Olga Kurylenko) and added numerous territories for Memoir of Pain [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Emmanuel Finkiel
film profile
]
 by Emmanuel Finkiel.

StudioCanal was particularly busy with Mia and the White Lion by Gilles de Maistre (with Mélanie LaurentDaniah De Villiers and Langley Kirkwood among the cast) and The Silent Revolution [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Lars Kraume, unveiled at Berlin as a gala screening, and which has been acquired for France by Pyramide.

Pathé Films will be at the Cannes Film Market to kick off pre-sales for Blessed Virgin, the new French film by Dutch director Paul Verhoeven, an SBS production for which the shoot will get under way in August, toplined by Belgium’s Virginie Efira. Pathé has also sold the documentary The Quest of Alain Ducasse [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by Gilles de Maistre to Magnolia Pictures for North America after it was premiered in Berlin’s Culinary Cinema programme, a section that turned out to be highly lucrative for MK2 Films with Ramen Shop [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by Singapore’s Eric Khoo.

Wild Bunch has added The German Lesson by Germany’s Christian Schwochow (which will star three European Film Promotion Shooting Stars, namely Maria DragusJohanna Wokalek and Ulrich Noethen) to its slate, and continued successfully pre-selling the animated film Where Is Anne Frank? by Ari Folman.

Charades added Summer [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ilya Stewart
film profile
]
 by Russia’s Kirill SerebrennikovHarajuku by Norway’s Eirik Svensson (in post-production) and the US movie Skate Kitchen by Crystal Moselle (unveiled at the Sundance Film Festival) to its line-up.

Gaumont can boast some great sales for the comedy Rolling to You [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by and starring Franck Dubosc.

Finally, Celluloid Dreams inked a fantastic North American deal for The Sower [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Marine Francen
film profile
]
 by Marine Francen, which was acquired by Film Movement (which also purchased the Cannes title La familia [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
).

(Translated from French)

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