Outsider nabs ‘Jose’ in N. America

Saramago docu co-produced by Almodovar, Meirelles

VENICE — “Jose and Pilar” has been sold to Outsider Pictures for the U.S. and Canada.

Pedro and Agustin Almodovar’s El Deseo, Fernando Mereilles’ 02 Filmes and Portugal’s JumpCut produced the docu-feature. Deal was struck by Marina Fuentes at Madrid-based 6 Sales.

Directed by 32-year-old JumpCut founder Miguel Goncalves Mendes, “Jose and Pilar” narrates the love story between Nobel Laureate writer Jose Saramago and Spanish journalist Pilar del Rio.

Through recording Saramago’s lecture tour appearances, pic centers far more on his quieter daily life and fears he’ll die before finishing “The Elephant Journey,” which proved his last but one novel.

‘Jose and Pilar’ is a film about an extraordinary man, one of the best-known authors of the 20th century, about the lack of time, the will to live so you can continue loving and fight for what you believe, and about the beauty of the simple things and the small acts of life,” Goncalves Mendes told Variety.

Meirelles said: “Each line (of ‘Jose and Pilar’) makes you think about your life or about the end of it.”

It’s great news that the warmth, wonder and storytelling abilities of Saramago and his relationship with Pilar will now be seen in North America,” Pedro Almodovar added.

Outsider Pics. plans a qualifying run for Academy Awards in the fall, then a spring 2012 theatrical release.

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