Pic played Ventana Sur's Primer Corte

PARIS — Gaul’s Bodega Films and Carlotta Films have acquired all French rights to Marco Berger’s “Ausente” (Absent), the Argentine director’s follow-up to “Plan B.”

Bodega will handle the theatrical release, Carlotta, whose core biz is classics home entertainment distribution, will handle “Absent’s” DVD release.

A brooding take on sexual repression turning on the relationship between a swimming coach and one of his attractive male students, “Absent” was one of the most-attended and best-received of titles playing the Primer Corte rough cut showcase at Ventana Sur early December.

“Absent” also received a Jury Special Mention this October at the Valdivia Festival’s Work in Progress session.

Philippe Tasca, prexy of Rendez-Vous Pics Intl., struck one of the earliest deals of Ventana Sur, closing worldwide rights outside Latin America to “Absent” on the second day of the mart.

Bodega and Carlotta pacted to take France at Ventana Sur, and officially closed on “Absent” last week in Paris, Tasca told Daily Variety.

Tasca is now negotiating a festival placement for “Absent,” he said.

Like “Plan B,” “Absent” is produced by Buenos Aires-based Oh My Gomez! Films.

“Plan B” was released in France by Isabelle Dubar’s Happiness Distribution.

Bodega and Carlotta have bought Latin American titles selectively, taking, for example, “Nora’s Will” from Mexican first-timer Mariana Chenillo.

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