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‘Man,’ ‘Road 47,’ ‘Clothing’ Preem at Rio

Fest’s Premiere Brazil centerpiece undercores diversity of contempo Brazilian output

Marcelo Gomes and Cao Guimaraes’ “The Man of the Crowd, ” Vicente Ferraz’s “Road 47” and Paulo Morelli’s “Sheep’s Clothing” will world premiere at 2013 Rio de Janeiro Intl. Film Festival.

All play its 19-title Premiere Brazil fiction/documentary feature competition, one of Rio’s biggest draws.

Co-produced by Sao Paulo’s Gullane Filmes, 3D jungle adventure film “Amazonia,” which closes Venice Festival this Saturday, will open Rio on Sept. 26.  Fest closes with “Hector Dhalia’s “Bald Mountain.”

The other highest-profile pic in Premiere Brazil looks, however, like being Fernando Coimbra’s drama-thriller “A Wolf at Door,” a movie with crossover potential which has segued from Toronto to San Sebastian to Rio after Mundial, an IM Global-Canana joint venture, made waves late August acquiring world sales rights on the child kidnap tale in its first pick-up from Brazil.

Running its traditional two weeks, this year thru’ to Oct. 10, and focusing its industry events over its first full week, this year’s Rio Fest will showcase 44 Brazilian features. That’s a sign of now robust movie production levels in Brazil where 83 local features were released in cinema theaters in 2012.

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Gomes’ fourth feature after he burst onto the scene with “Cinema, Aspirins and Vultures,” “Man” is co-directed with Cao Guimaraes and shot entirely in Guimaraes’ native city of Belo Horizonte. Loosely adapting Edgar Allen Poe’s 1840 short story, it weighs in as “love story between two solitary people,” Gomes has said, here a metro driver who likes to study crowds, and a station controller, who seeks out relations via social networks.

A sign of how hiked investment muscle is broadening film production options in Brazil, and encouraging larger-canvas subjects, the long-in-the-works “Road 47” is a pioneering Brazilian World War II movie, set against the background of Brazil’s bitterest campaign, the depths-of-winter-fought Battle of Monte Castello.

Vicente Ferraz (“I Am Cuba: The Siberian Mammoth”) directs. Italy’s Verdeoro, Brazil’s Tres Mundos Producoes and Primo Filmes and Portugal’s Stopline produce.

Helmed by a longtime collaborator at Fernando Meirelles 02 Filmes, “The Sheep’s Clothing” turns on a troubled friends’ reunion.

Rio’s 43 Brazilian feature spread draws on movies from 12 Brazilian states, led by Sao Paulo and Rio Janeiro but including Pernambuco, Parana, Maranhao, Minas Gerais, Espiritu Santo, Bahia, Ceara, Paraiba and Santa Catarina.

That underscores the emergence of building regional production hubs across much of the country, plus Rio’s determination to maintain its preeminence as Brazil’s major platform for local pic premieres.

Premiere Brazil titles also run a wide gamut in film types.

Garnering attention and awards for “Look At Me,” an intimate road movie and transsexual portrait that he co-helmed with Claudia Priscilla, Kiko Goifman returns social allegory “Periscopio,” a solo-effort fiction feature.

Dezenove will unveil Lina Chamie’s “Best Friends,” about a man whose soul brother dies. Hilton Lacerda’s  “Tattoo” is set in a 1978 Brazil on the point of its slow emergence from dictatorship. Seen in rough cut at 2012’s San Sebastian Films in Progress, Caru Alves de Souza’s “Underage” charts a troubled mother-son relationship.

“Beheadings Game,” from vet Sergio Bianchi, captures the growing unrest that inflamed street protests this year. Produced by Vania Catani’s Bananeira Filmes (”The Clown,” “El Ardor”), Ricardo Targino’s “Lyrics” turns on a star-crossed love story; Caio Soh’s “Past Minutes” marks a friendship comedy follow-up to his held-to-be-promising debut “Soulbound,” seen at Rio in 2011.

Premiere Brazil’s Documentary competition, an always

strong section at the festival, includes “City of God – 10 Years Later,” which examines the fortunes of the milestone movies’ actors and favela setting a decade on.

Out of competition titles include Imagem’s “The Dognapper.” Bowing Oct. 4, it reps the latest comedy play for the Brazilian B.O. after now an ever-longer list of local laffer hits.

PREMIERE BRASIL: FEATURE COMPETITION
“Underage,” (Caru Alves de Souza)
“Sheep’s Clothing,” (Paulo Morelli)
“Road 47 – The Mountain,” (Vicente Ferraz)
“The Man of the Crowd,” (Marcelo Gomes, Cao Guimaraes)
“Beheadings Game,” (Sergio Bianchi)
“A Wolf at the Door,” (Fernando Coimbra)
“Best Friends,” (Lina Chamie)
“Periscope,” (Kiko Goifman)
“Lyrics,” (Ricardo Targino)
“Tattoo,” (Hilton Lacerda)
“Past Minute,” (Caio Soh)

PREMIERE BRAZIL: DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
“Ruckus in the Circus,” (Roberto Berliner, Pedro Bronz)
“Custodians,” (Aly Muritiba)
“Captive Hearts,” (Joana Nin)
“City of God – 10 Years Later,” (Cavi Borges, Luciano Vidigal)
“Writers Block,” (Ernesto Rodriguez)
“Samba Ladies,” (Susanna Lira)
“Fla x Flux,” (Renato Terra)
“Stories of Arcanjo – a documentary about Tim Lopes,” (Guilherme Azevedo)

NEW DIRECTORS: FICTION
“The Exercise of Chaos,” (Frederico Machado)
“Dark Sea,” (Rodrigo Aragao)
“The Boy and the World,” (Ale Abreu)
“Gypsy River,” (Julia Zakia)
“Rio Belongs To Us,” (Ricardo Pretti)
“Harmonica’s Howl,” (Bruno Safadi)

NEW DIRECTORS: DOCUMENTARY
“Carioca was a River,” (Simplicio Neto)
“Here is so Far,” (Eliza Capai)

OUT OF COMPETITION: FICTION
“Sentimental Education,” (Julio Bressane)
“Ugly, Me?” (Helena Ignez)
“Never Too Old To Meow,” (Rafael Primot)
“The Dognapper,” (Pedro Amorim)

OUT OF COMPETITION: DOCUMENTARY
“Cauby – I Would Start All Over Again,” (Nelson Hoineff)
“They Killed My Brother,” (Cristiano Burlan)
“The Legend of the Golden Mountain,” (Victor Lopes)
“Twenty,” (Carlos Diegues)

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