Following Paris and New York, “Tbilisi, I Love You” has become the next film in Emmanuel Benbihy’s “Cities of Love.”
The film, involving only Georgian directors, is a series of 10 completed short films produced by David and Nika Agiashvili through Storyman Pictures — each a personal narrative about the republic’s capital city, Tbilisi.
Directors include Nika Agiashvili, Irakli Chkhikvadze, Levan Glonti , Alexander Kviria, Tako Shavgulidze, Kote Takaishvili, Levan Tutberidze. Actors include Ron Perlman, Malcolm McDowell, Sarah Dumont, George Finn, Nutsa Kukhianidze, Giorgi Kipshidze and Ia Sukhitashvili.
Perlman’s short features him as a nameless American motorcyclist who rides through Tbilisi’s remote areas with a woman named Freedom (Dumont). McDowell’s vignette centers around an actor who reluctantly agrees to a one-month shoot in Tbilisi.
Benbihy has been developing the “Cities of Love” series since 2000 via his Ever So Close banner to sell cities one-picture licenses. Benbihy is aiming to develop an online platform of city-driven cultural and social movements that will feature such locations as Shanghai, Berlin, Taipei, Mexico City, Rotterdam, New Orleans, Mumbai, Jerusalem, Sydney and Tokyo.
Credo Cinema’s Jason Speer, Ever So Close’s Emmanuel Benbihy and Paata Trapaidze are exec producing the Tbilisi film.
The 2006 “Paris, je t’aime” grossed $17 million worldwide. “New York I Love You” (pictured) grossed $8 million in 2009.