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Alanté Kavaïté and Leyla Bouzid for the Groupe Ouest

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- The two directors and the other laureates of the 2016 selection of the European Film Lab’s writing workshop are hard at work in Brittany

Alanté Kavaïté and Leyla Bouzid for the Groupe Ouest
Directors Alanté Kavaïté and Leyla Bouzid

Since Wednesday, the ten writers accepted during the Groupe Ouest’s 2016 Selection (comprising eight projects) have been knuckling down in Brittany for the first of three writing support sessions (which will continue until 6 April, and will then take place again from 19-30 June, with a final session from 9-16 October) organised as part of the European Film Lab, which invests specifically in indie film.

Most notably, Alanté Kavaïté is working on the screenplay for Submergée. The French-based Lithuanian filmmaker turned heads with her feature debut, Fissures [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(2007), before proving that she could clearly live up to all her potential with her following opus, The Summer of Sangaile [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Alanté Kavaïté
film profile
]
(winner of the Best Director Award at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, also selected in the Berlinale Panorama and the Lithuanian candidate for the 2016 Oscar for Best Foreign-language Film). She also co-penned the screenplay for Evolution [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 by Lucile Hadzihalilovic. Her new project is set on an island that is on the brink of being flooded – nearly all of the inhabitants have already abandoned it. Then an incredibly fierce storm hits. All the survivors can do is look on, surrounded by catastrophe: communications are down, and the boats in the harbour have all sunk... According to Antoine Le Bos, the founder and artistic director of the Groupe Ouest, “With The Summer of Sangaile, Alanté found a rich directing style that persuaded us to support her with her next opus, a genre film, but also an oceanic film...”

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Also featuring among the selected participants is Leyla Bouzid, with her project Trois histoires d'amour et de désir. The young director recently rose to prominence with her feature debut, As I Open My Eyes [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Leyla Bouzid
film profile
]
, which won the Europa Cinemas Label in the Venice Days and screened at myriad international festivals in the space of just a few months (Toronto, Rotterdam, Dubai, Carthage and Namur, to name just a few), with more than 20 awards into the bargain. Her new screenplay recounts three stories of love and desire, which unfold at different times and in different places. What is it that connects them? The dark and fiery desires of three Arab men who are crazed with love but who nevertheless turn down their sweethearts for various reasons... For Antoine Le Bos, “Leyla Bouzid is a filmmaker who tackles the depiction of the desires of a new generation that has emerged from the Arab Spring; she is an invaluable, radiant filmmaker who gets as close as possible to human beings and their desires... We really wanted to accompany her on her quest!"

The Groupe Ouest 2016 Selection also includes Le message by duo Chloé Mazlo (winner of the César Award for Best Animated Short in 2015 for Les Petits cailloux) and Yacine Badday, Les chats ont neuf vies, moi un peu moins by Marion Desseigne Ravel, Fatum by Gaëlle Douël, L'île by Raphaël Mathié, Le Pollinisateur by Frédéric Ramade, and Louves by Martin Tronquart and Laura Piani.

Among the laureates at previous editions, we could mention such names as Pablo Agüero with Eva Doesn’t Sleep [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, which will be released in French theatres next Wednesday by Pyramide, Belgium’s Bernard Bellefroid (Melody [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Bernard Bellefroid
film profile
]
), Uda Benyamina (Bâtarde [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Houda Benyamina
film profile
]
– currently in post-production), Sabrina B Karine (with the screenplay for Agnus Dei [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Lou de Laâge
film profile
]
by Anne Fontaine), duo Simon Rouby and Julien Lilti (Adama [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
), and Czech director Petr Vaclav.

(Translated from French)

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