Sébastien Betbeder preparing Ulysse et Mona
by Fabien Lemercier
- Eric Cantona and Manal Issa topline the upcoming film by the director, staged by Envie de Tempête Productions; the first clapperboard is due to slam in January
Having risen to prominence at Locarno in 2007 with Nuage [+see also:
film profile], been selected at Toronto in 2012 with Nights with Theodore [+see also:
film profile], and featured on the ACID programme at Cannes in 2013 and 2016 with 2 Autumns 3 Winters [+see also:
film profile] and Journey to Greenland [+see also:
interview: Frédéric Dubreuil
film profile] (for which Netflix bought the worldwide rights), Sébastien Betbeder (who was also behind Marie and the Misfits [+see also:
film profile] and was nominated for the César Award for Best Short Film in 2015 with Inupiluk) will kick off the shoot for his sixth feature, Ulysses & Mona [+see also:
film profile], on 22 January.
Standing out among the cast are Eric Cantona (You and the Night [+see also:
film profile], The Salvation [+see also:
interview: Kristian Levring
film profile], Looking for Eric [+see also:
interview: Cannes 2009
interview: Steve Evets - actor
film profile]) and Manal Issa (crowned Best Actress at Les Arcs in 2015 and nominated for the Lumières Award for Best New Actress in 2017 for Parisienne [+see also:
film profile], also popular in Nocturama [+see also:
interview: Bertrand Bonello
Written by the director, the story revolves around a 55-year-old artist called Ulysse – he’s a modern artist, to be precise. Four years ago, he distanced himself from his loved ones and simultaneously ditched his career. Today, he lives alone with his dog Joseph in an old country house in the middle of the forest, a few kilometres away from Nantes. He spends his days playing tennis against a ball launcher and listening to horror-film soundtracks. In short, Ulysse is dreadfully bored, but he is too proud to regret his decisions. Mona is 20 and is a student at the Nantes School of Fine Arts. As she attends her nude and still-life lessons, and theory classes taught by old teachers with one foot in the grave, her life as an artist resembles "a pond where the stagnant water has no way to flow". One day, Mona decides to set off in search of Ulysse...
Produced by Frédéric Dubreuil for Envie de Tempête Productions (a partner on virtually all of Sébastien Betbeder’s features), Ulysses and Mona will be backed by the Pays de la Loire region, among others, where the shoot will take place from 22 January-23 February. The French theatrical release will be handled by Sophie Dulac Distribution, while the international sales are still under negotiation.
(Translated from French)
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