SITGES — One of Catalonia’s most promising young filmmakers, Isaki Lacuesta, is to direct “The Condemned,” his first full fiction feature.
Rolling year end, pic will shoot mainly in Peru but also in Spain and Argentina.
Catalan shingle Benece (“Days of August,” “The Clown and the Fuhrer”) will produce the $1.3 million pic.
Production-distribution house Sagrera and distributor Versus Ent. will co-produce. Versus will also handle Spanish theatrical distribution. Catalan regional pubcaster TVC has taken free-to-air rights for Catalonia.
A suspenser, “Condemned” tells the story of Martin, an Argentinean exiled in Spain for more than 30 years. Martin is asked to return to Argentina by another former political activist, Raul, to search for the remains of another comrade who went missing under the Argentine Junta dictatorship.
The “desaparecidos,” or “disappeared,” subject is a hot button issue in Spain, as the government encourages Spaniards to locate the bodies of fellow countrymen executed during the Spanish Civil War.
“The film’s universal, but highly contemporary in its concern,” said David Matamoros, Benece executive producer.
Lacuesta will direct Argentine thesps Maria Onetto (“The Headless Woman”), Daniel Fanego (“Moon of Avellaneda”), and Arturo Goetz (“The Empty Nest”).
Lacuesta’s first feature, docpic “Cravan vs. Cravan” turning on the life and art of the early 20th-century poet, boxer and Dadaist Arthur Cravan, won the audience prize at the 2002 Sitges fest, becoming a cult item.
“The Legend of Time,” another Lacuesta docu, released in 2006, explored the legacy of legendary flamenco singer Camaron de la Isla.
It world premiered at the Rotterdam festival. Awards included jury prize and best actor at the 2006 Las Palmas fest.