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IFFR 2023 Big Screen Competition

EXCLUSIVE: Poster for IFFR title Luka


- Jessica Woodworth’s new film, inspired by Dino Buzzati’s novel The Tartar Steppe, will shortly premiere in the Dutch gathering’s Big Screen Competition

EXCLUSIVE: Poster for IFFR title Luka
Luka by Jessica Woodworth

Luka, a young soldier craving battle, heads north across desolate wastelands to the legendary Fort Kairos, where soldiers heroically defend the remains of civilisation. He finds instead a force that has never even seen an enemy and is lorded over by a High Command bloated with delusions. He discovers joy and hope in friendships with Konstantin, an enigmatic radar engineer, and Geronimo, a light-hearted private. Their deepening bond brings light to their otherwise bleak and parched existence on the brink of a civilisation that clearly has almost obliterated itself. Luka’s days melt into the haze of waiting for an enemy until the day he spots a horse to the north. His loyalties are tested and he chooses to defend his friend, rather than honour the code of the fort that demands obedience, endurance and sacrifice. His defiance triggers a string of tragic events. The power of friendship transcends the fort and causes its fall.

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This is the synopsis of Luka [+see also:
film review
interview: Jessica Woodworth
film profile
(previously known as Fortress), the new film written and directed by Belgian-US filmmaker and Venice Lion of the Future Award winner Jessica Woodworth. The Belgian-Italian-Dutch-Bulgarian-Armenian co-production will world-premiere in the Big Screen Competition at the 2023 IFFR (25 January-5 February).

Luka is a black-and-white audiovisual tour de force set in stunning Sicilian locations, and starring Berlinale Shooting Star Jonas Smulders as well as Geraldine Chaplin, Jan Bijvoet and Sam Louwyck, and featuring music from Teho Teardo. It was inspired by Dino Buzzati’s famous novel The Tartar Steppe.

It is being produced by Peter Brosens, of Bo Films, and co-produced by Maarten D’Hollander and Tim Martens (Krater Films), Diana Elbaum (Beluga Tree), Flaminio Zadra and Pilar Saavedra Perrotta (Palosanto Films), Denis Vaslin and Fleur Knopperts (Volya Films), Stefan Kitanov and Mira Staleva (Art Fest), and Anzhela Frangyan (Dokino). Its international sales are managed by Berlin-based sales agent Films Boutique.

Check out our exclusive poster for Luka below:

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