You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Venice: Mongrel Intl. Swoops On Biennale College Film ‘The Fits’ By U.S. Director Anna Rose Holmer (EXCLUSIVE)

VENICE – Mongrel Intl., the acquisition unit of Canadian shingle Mongrel Media, has picked up worldwide sales rights to U.S. director Anna Rose Holmer’s first feature “The Fits,” about and 11-year-old African-American girl who is a tomboy and assimilates into a tight-knit dance team in Cincinnati’s West End.

Pic produced by Lisa Kjerulff was shepherded through the Venice fest’s Biennale College initiative which finances and mentors micro-budget works with potential to travel from development through distribution. “The Fits” world-preemed positively in Venice.

It features what is being hailed as a potent perf by Royalty Hightower who plays a girl named Toni who transitions from wanting to become a female boxer and sparring with her brother to training with the Lionesses, an all female troupe of young champion drill dancers. The other girls are then hit by a mysterious fainting spell.

Holmer previously co-directed and produced docu “A Ballet in Sneakers: Jerome Robbins and Opus Jazz.” She also produced director Jody LeeLipes’ “Ballet 422,” which screened at Tribeca earlier this year.

Popular on Variety

“The movie is a gorgeous celebration of the young body and of movement, as well as a haunting and mysterious evocation of that delicate moment in adolescent life when everything changes,” enthused Charlotte Mickie, president of Mongrel International.

“It spoke to me personally—I vividly remember that time when all was inchoate and wondrous. I am so proud to be associated with these filmmakers who have made this experience completely visceral for us on screen.”

The fits received Euros 150,000 ($167,000) from the Biennale College program, which is spawning movies that are definitely marketable. Earlier in the fest another Biennale College title “Blanka” was picked up for international sales, in this case by M-Appeal.

Titles from previous Biennale College crops include U.S. helmer Tim Sutton’s “Memphis” which segued from Venice to Sundance and has since been sold in some 30 territories, in some cases even for theatrical distribution.


More Film

  • 'Chez Jolie Coiffure' Review: Hair Salon

    Film Review: 'Chez Jolie Coiffure'

    Shortly before the credits roll on “Chez Jolie Coiffure,” a customer in the eponymous hair salon asks her stylist, Sabine, if she has any plans to go home this year. Out of context, this sounds like the kind of standard, empty small talk one often makes while having one’s hair cut: what good movies you’ve [...]

  • Best Netflix original movies

    The 10 Best Netflix Movies of 2019

    This time last year, Netflix estimated that it would release 90 original movies in 2019. At the time, the number seemed outrageous: That’s more than four times the number Warner Bros. made in the same 12-month period — and more than any human would ever care to watch. Guess what: Turns out that 90 was a [...]

  • Luc Besson EuropaCorp Searching for Hit

    EuropaCorp Posts 50% Drop in Revenues in Half-Year Results

    Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp has posted a 50% drop in revenues during the first half of the 2019-20 financial year even as the financially ailing company tries to finalize a rescue deal with its junior lender, Vine Alternative Investments. EuropaCorp’s revenues fell to €40.7 million ($45 million) during the six months ending Sept. 30. The company [...]

  • Richard Jewell Olivia Wilde

    'Richard Jewell': Kathy Scruggs' Roommate, Family Angered by Journalist's Portrayal

    Penny Furr was Kathy Scruggs’ roommate when the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter got a major scoop involving the investigation into the Centennial Olympic Park bombing. Scruggs had discovered that Richard Jewell, the security guard who had evacuated the area before the bomb exploded, saving dozens of lives in the process, was a suspect in the attack. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content