Paris-based The Party Film Sales has acquired international rights to “Aicha,” Mehdi M. Barsaoui’s sequel to “A Son,” premiering in Venice, and “Transmazonia” by Pia Marais (“Layla Fourie”) .
WME Independent represents the North American and multi-territory agreements on “Transmazonia”. Both films are in post-production and will be presented by The Party Film Sales at the European Film Market where the company will unveil promo reels.
Set in contemporary Tunisia, “Aicha” is inspired by real events and tells the story of Aya, a woman in her twenties who lives with her parents, feeling trapped in a life without prospects. One day, she was involved in a bus accident on her way to work. As the sole survivor of the accident, she realizes this could be her chance to start a new life. She flees to Tunis under a new identity, but everything is quickly compromised when she witnesses a police blunder. The film is produced by Cinetelefilms and Dolce Vita Films, and co-produced by 13 Prods and Dorje Films, in co-production with Sunnyland Films and Cinemawaves Films.
“Aicha” marks Barsaoui’s second release. The filmmaker's first feature film, “A Son”, won the best actor award at the Venice Film Festival, as well as the Césars. It was sold worldwide by The Party Film Sales.
“With his remarkable “Un fils”, Mehdi (Barsaoui) continues to delve deeper into the themes of emancipation and moral choices,” said Estelle de Araujo and Samuel Blanc, co-heads of international distribution at The Party Film Sales.
“(Barsaoui’s) work is truly gripping, full of unexpected twists and turns,” said the two men, who also highlighted the film’s socio-political context in Tunisia.
“Transmazonia,” meanwhile, follows Rebecca, the daughter of missionary Lawrence Byrne, who was declared a “miracle” after surviving a plane crash as a child in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. Years later, Rebecca, who has become a famous healer in the region, and her father find themselves embroiled in a conflict that escalates when illegal loggers invade land belonging to the indigenous people they are evangelizing.
The film stars Helena Zengel, the rising German star who was nominated for a Golden Globe for her performance in “News of the World” and who starred in “System Crasher,” which competed in Berlin and won her a nomination at the European Film Festival. Price.
“Transmazonia” is Marais’ fourth film after “Layla Fourie,” which won the jury’s special mention at the Berlinale; “At the Age of Ellen,” which competed at Locarno; and “The Unpolished,” which won the Tiger Award in Rotterdam.
The film was produced by Gaijin and Cinema Defacto, in co-production with Pandora Film Produktion and Point Productions; in co-production with Volos Films, Aldabra Films, Vitamine C, O'Par and Cabocla Filmes; in association with Cinema Inutile and with Matizar and Tigresa; and in co-production with Arte-WDR and RTS Radio – Télévision Suisse.
“We have always been big admirers of Pia Marais’ work and are thrilled to begin working with her on ‘Transmanozia,’” said Estelle de Araujo and Samuel Blanc, co-heads of sales at The Party Film Sales. “It is a dense and tense ecological thriller, exploring the complexities of human nature and which we are convinced will mark a milestone in Pia's career,” said de Araujo and Blanc.
Party Film Sales' EFM line-up also includes Mamadou Dia's “Demba,” which had its world premiere in the Encounters section of the Berlinale, as well as previously announced projects like Kaouther Ben Hania's “You Shall Not Make an Image,” “This Ma vie” and “Dans la cuisine Nguyen” by Stéphane Ly-Cuong.