Côte d'Ivoire native Philippe Lacôte will be making his feature film debut with a project titled Run, which was one of 15 projects selected for the Cannes L’Atelier - an initiative which runs during the Cannes Film Festival aimed at finding financing for projects by upcoming directors that are in an advanced state of development - last year (2012), when it first showed up on my radar.
Since then I've been tracking the project, and this morning, learned that it now has its cast: Isaach de Bankole (likely the most familiar to American audiences; he's currently starring in Andrew Dosunmu's Mother Of George), Abdoul Karim Konate (he stars in Bamba Souleymane's Burn It Up Djassa) and Rasmane Ouedraogo (the veteran featured in films like Ousmane Sembene's Moolaadé)
Here's the intriguing synopsis for Run:
Run is running away… He has just killed his country’s prime minister. To escape, he has taken on the face and clothes of a madman, wandering throughout the town for months. Run speaks of his “transformation into a madman.” He tells the tale of his chaotic journey, like that of the Ivory Coast, by deliberately placing himself beyond the edge of reason. His life returns to him in flashes: his childhood with Master Tourou, when he dreamt of becoming a rainmaker; his incredible adventures with Greedy Gladys, and his past in the militia as a Young Patriot. Run has not chosen all of these lives. He has stumbled into them, escaping from one life to another. This is why he is called “Run.”
By the way, a short film by director Lacôte is currently traveling with the African Metropolis initiative, which features 7 African directors, each exploring their own "African Metropolis" on film. This should give Stateside audiences a first glimpse at the filmmaker's work, while we wait for his feature debut, Run, to become a reality.
Run is currently in production, with a 2014 release date targeted via BAC FIlms a French distribution company.
In addition to being selected for the Cannes L'Atelier, the project has already been the recipient of a number of cash awards, grants and such, including a CNC grant and the Pitching Prize in the Amiens Festival 2011.