In preparation for Sundance and Berlin, Beta has picked up worldwide rights to the Israeli feature in World Cinema Dramatic Competition Sundance, “Sand Storm” and Global Screen has picked up worldwide rights to the Colombian feature “Between Sand and Sea” (“La Ciénaga”)
By the producers of Venice Public Choice Award-winning “The Farewell Party”, “Sand Storm” is an Israeli drama, shot in Arabic by debut-writer/director Elite Zexer. It will have its World Premiere at Sundance on January 25 and the European premiere to follow at the Berlinale Panorama section in February.
“Sand Storm” is the second partnership between Beta Cinema and the Israeli 2-Team Productions ( Haim Mecklberg/ Estee Yacov-Mecklberg). The film was already given the top award at the Locarno Festival’s works-in-progress section.
As wedding festivities get underway in a Bedouin village in Southern Israel, Jalila finds herself in the awkward position of hosting her husband Suliman’s marriage to a second, much younger wife. During the celebration, Jalila stumbles across eldest daughter Layla’s involvement with a boy from her university—a strictly forbidden liaison that would shame the family. Burying the indignity of Suliman and his new bride living next door, Jalila also tries to contain Layla’s situation by clamping down on her. But younger and possessed of a boundless spirit, Layla sees a different life for herself...
Director Elite Zexer: “ ‘Sand Storm’ is 87 minutes, but for me, it's years. Years of an amazing ride, of passions, of struggles, of ups, of downs, of pure joy, of forever waiting or of an impossible run. Years of creation. What I learned during the making of this film is that the most wonderful part of filmmaking is the making. It's hard to part with it and let it run loose in the world. But it's also very exciting. I can't wait.”
Producer Haim Mecklberg (2-Team Production): “We're extremely proud of “Sand Storm”, which touched the hearts of everybody who was exposed to it so far. Our collaboration with Elite was a sheer delight. Her command of every aspect of the film did not seize to amaze us through every step of the production. After a great experience we had with Beta Cinema on “The Farewell Party” (Goldwyn distributed stateside), we were very happy to find out how much they loved “Sand Storm” and we're looking forward to another fruitful cooperation.”
Beta Cinema’s Thorsten Ritter says that “ ‘Sand Storm’ is a true gem. It depicts a very particular world and culture, but never in a folkloristic or exposing way. Instead it draws you right in to find yourself immersed in family dynamics that resonate universally and regardless of being a man or woman. And while the film has not a scene too many, it is yet nuanced and multi-layered, featuring beautiful performances and a filmmaker in full command. You can tell we’re very excited.”
The second announcement emanating about Sundance also comes from Germany
Colombian feature “Between Sea and Land” (“La Ciénaga”) directed by and starring Manolo Cruz was just picked up by Munich-based international sales agent Global Screen for the world (except for Latin America which will be handled by Cineplex and which UIP will distribute in Colombia itself).
It will have its world premiere January 22, 2016 at the Sundance Film Festival,
“Between Sea And Land” (“La Ciénaga”) is a breathtakingly tour de force from actor – writer - director Manolo Cruz, codirected with Carlos del Castillo. The film, set on a small inlet adjacent to the Caribbean Sea in Colombia, tells the moving story of 28-year-old Alberto and his mother Rosa.
Alberto is afflicted with a neurological disorder that confines him to his bed, and his mother, Rosa, lovingly protects and takes care of him. Alberto’s wry humor and creativity help them muster the strength to endure, and he greatly enjoys the company of his neighbor Giselle, who showers Alberto with affection. But the life Alberto can imagine feels just as close-yet-out-of-reach as the sea he looks upon, and which he dreams of one day visiting.
Manolo Cruz (who also wrote the film) gives a tremendous performance as Alberto, a young man trapped by physical hardship but unbound by spirit. Working in close alliance with his co-director Carlos del Castillo during filming allowed Cruz the space to portray the extraordinary resilience and grace of a character caught in between the margins of a beautiful and fragile landscape.
Klaus Rasmussen, Senior Sales and Acquisitions Manager at Global Screen states, “Our whole team was amazed with this unique and exceptional film that takes the viewer into a different world poor in materialism but rich in human heart and courage. We are very happy to present Manolo Cruz’s film to the international audience.”
“Between Sea And Land” (“La Ciénaga”) is produced by Mago Films in coproduction with Photogroup Films and Scarlett Cinema.
Global Screen GmbH is a leading German sales & distribution company for theatrical and TV films outside of German-speaking territories. Our company is one of the largest world-sales outfits in Europe and has a catalogue containing more than 15,000 titles. The theatrical distribution handles a varied portfolio of German- and foreign-speaking feature films focusing on commercial arthouse films, family entertainment, and high-profile documentary features.
Among Global Screen’s current theatrical films are “The Memory of Water” starring Elena Anaya, apocalyptic Sci-Fi Thriller "Sum1" starring Iwan Rheon, German action blockbuster “Nick – Off Duty” and Dominik Graf’s "Beloved Sisters", which represented Germany at the Academy Awards as well as Nadav Sherman’s "The Green Prince", who won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival 2014. Global Screen’s portfolio contains also Erik Pope’s "A Thousand Times Good Night" starring Juliette Binoche and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Sandra Nettelbeck’s "Mr. Morgan’s Last Love" with Michael Caine as well as Academy-Award-winning "Nowhere in Africa" (2001), "The Boat" (1981), "Good Bye, Lenin!" (2003), "When We Leave" (2009) and the very successful vampire arthouse hit "Let the Right One In" (2008). The high-profile 3D animation films "Niko & The Way to the Stars" and "Ooops! Noah is Gone…" were sold all over the world and established the company as one of the leaders in family entertainment distribution.