CANNES–  New York-based distributor Zeitgeist Films has acquired U.S. rights to Volker Schlondorff’s historical drama “Diplomacy” from Gaumont. 

Taking place on the day Paris was liberated by the Allies, “Diplomacy” chronicles the tense confrontation between the Swedish ambassador (Andre Dussollier, “Same Old Song”) and the German military governor of Paris, Dietrich von Choltitz (Niels Arestrup, “A Prophet”). The latter was ordered by Adolf Hitler to blow up the city, but he chose to ignore the Fuhrer’s command after being convinced by the ambassador.

“Diplomacy,” which Gaumont has has now nearly sold worldwide, is produced by Marc de Bayser and Frank Le Wita at Gaul’s Film Oblige.

“Diplomacy” world-premiered at the Berlinale’s Special Gala section and garnered strong reviews. Variety’s Scott Foundas described the film as “passionate, engaging and emotional in its depiction of the relationship between Dietrich von Cholitz, the German military governor of occupied Paris, and Swedish consul-general Raoul Nordling.”

The deal, negotiated by Zeitgeist co-president Nancy Gerstman and Gaumont deputy head of sales Yohann Comte, marks the first collaboration between Gaumont and Zeitgeist Films.


“We are honored to have the opportunity of working with Gaumont and Volker Schlöndorff to make this superb film the success it deserves to be,” said Gerstman.

Comte said “The producers and Gaumont are very proud to entrust Zeitgeist with a prestigious and compelling film like ‘Diplomacy.’ We’re confident that the Zeitgeist team will distribute ‘Diplomacy’ with the dedication that has become their trademark.” 

A critically-aclaimed German director, Schlondorff is best known for “The Tin Drum” which won an Oscar.