Java kicks off sales at Biarritz

French company sells several documentaries

BIARRITZ, France — Kicking off sales at the TV France Intl. Rendez-Vous in Biarritz, Java Films has sold “Manila’s Lost Children” and “Secret Story: the Gulag Archipelago” to Swedish pubcaster SvT.

Helmed by Jean Crepu and Nicolas Miletitch, “Gulag” features Alexander Solzhenitsyn describing how the novel’s manuscript was smuggled to the West.

“Manila’s Lost Children,” Thierry Delacroix’s docu about the city’s street kids, also went to Ireland’s TG4, which added Java’s curio docu “Help! My Neighbors Are Baboons!,” about baboon raids on kitchens in Overburg, South Africa, to the shopping basket.

Additional sales for Java came from “Johannesburg: The Most Dangerous City,” which went to Belgian broadcasters VRT and RTBF.

The buys come after Java, founded by Roch Bozino in 2005, ramped up staff to handle an ever-expanding inventory, appointing Donatien Pierda, formerly at Europa Images, as sales exec, and Kathryn Bonnici as marketing and acquisitions consultant.

Now handling more than 300 hours of docu programming, Java is broadening its remit, adding HD programming, and developing a doc collection where directors deliver an alternative take to common wisdom on controversial subjects. One of the first-up titles is “Living in a Minefield” on land-mines in Cambodia.

According to Bozino, sought-after Java docs at the Rendez-Vous include Mirya Makil’s “Big Business,” about obesity profiteers in the U.S., and “Afghanistan: Into the War Zone.”

Mixing news clips, and original reportage from an embedded crew, “Afghanistan” is a current affairs report on the lives of a French regiment in Afghanistan, just days before 10 soldiers from the regiment were killed in August in an Taliban ambush 70 miles from Kabul. Java is offering “Afghanistan” screeners at Biarritz.

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