'Paradise: Faith' won special jury kudo at Venice

Strand Releasing has acquired all U.S. rights to the Ulrich Seidl trilogy “Paradise” — “Paradise: Love,” “Paradise Faith” and “Paradise: Hope” with plans for release starting in the first quarter.

Deal was announced Sunday at the Toronto Intl. Film Festival, one day after the Austrian helmer won the special jury prize at the Venice Film Festival for “Paradise: Faith.”

“Paradise: Love” had its world premiere in competition at the Cannes Film Festival in May and its U.S. premiere last week at the Telluride Film Festival followed by screenings at Toronto. That film  is set on the beaches of Kenya where older European women known as “sugar mamas” come to seek male companionship and focuses on Teresa, a 50-year-old Austrian mother.

“Paradise: Faith,” which had its world premiere at Venice, focuses on Teresa’s sister, a single woman in her 50s who devotes her summer vacation to doing missionary work so that Austria may be brought back to the path of virtue.

“Paradise: Hope,” to be released next year, deals with Teresa’s daughter who goes to a diet camp for teenagers and finds love and romance.

The deal was done between Jon Gerrans of Strand and Olimpia Pont Chafer of Coproduction Office.

Previous films by Seidl include “Dog Days” and “Import Export.”

The “Paradise” trilogy has sold in Austria ( Stadtkino) , Belgium (Lumiere) , CIS (Maywin) , Denmark (Ost for Paradis) , France (Happiness), Germany (Neue Visionen), Greece (Feelgood) , Italy (Archibald & Academy2) , Luxembourg (Lumiere), Netherlands (Eye Institut), Norway (AS Fidalgo) , Poland (Against Gravity) , South Korea (World Cinema), Spain (Golem), Sweden (Triart) and United Kingdom (Soda Pictures). “Paradise: Love” has been acquired in Argentina (LAT-E), Bulgaria (A Plus), Chile (LaRed) , Costa Rica (LaRed), Hong Kong (Edko Films) , Hungary (Anjou Lafayette), Israel (Orlando Films), Mexico (Mantarraya & Interior13), Paraguay (LaRed), Romania (Cloro Film) and Uruguay (LaRed).

Filed Under:

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more