CANNES – Todo Cine Latino, the speciality label of Paul Hudson’s Outsider Pictures, has signed with sales agent Fortissimo for U.S. distribution rights to Paula Ortiz’s “La Novia” (The Bride), a notable recent Spanish breakout hit, reaping 12 nominations for January’s Spanish Academy Goya Awards.
Continuing a distribution alliance, Strand Releasing will handle home entertainment and digital rights.
Ortiz won acclaim and a Valladolid fest new director nod for her debut, “Chrysalis,” a 2011 triptych of love stories. “The Bride” has turned her, however, from a talent to track to a recognized director. Adapting the most famous stage play of Federico García Lorca, a poet who inspired Leonard Cohen to take up songwriting, “Blood Wedding” turns on a woman promised to one man but who elopes with a former lover on horseback the same day of her wedding, pursued by the bridegroom, egged on by his tyrannical mother. Their disobedience will have devastating consequences.
First performed in 1932, Lorca’s acknowledgement of capitulation to passion but lament for blood feuds and simmering rancor that was to tear Spain apart in a Civil War, is transposed by Ortiz to the Cappadocia white desert in Turkey – Variety called it “Mars on Earth,” shot with immaculate cinematography and a sensibility that fuses Latin melodrama and Lorca’s poetry. “A violent, highly savage drama” about “visceral human passion,” per Ortiz, “The Bride” was acquired by Fortissimo just before it world premiered at September’s San Sebastian Festival, the highest-profile in the Spanish-speaking world.
Bowing Dec. 11 in Spain, “The Bride” is still playing Spanish theaters, wracking up €1.05 million ($1.2 million) in gross box office.
The U.S. distribution deal was negotiated by Hudson and Fortissimo Nicole Mackey.
“La Novia” is “beautifully shot and impeccably acted,” said Hudson.
Said Mackey: “We are so happy that ‘La Novia’ will be released by Outsider in the USA. Paul has nurtured so many wonderful Spanish language films, and ‘La Novia’ is a Lorca-inspired pearl.”
Outsider will release the film in the U.S. on Aug. 7 at the Tower Theatre in Miami, where the film premiered as part of the Miami Film Festival earlier this year.
“The Bride” will then be released on digital streaming site Todocinelatino.tv, dedicated to the release in North America of the best in Latin cinema.
Distribution accord adds “The Bride” to Outsider’s Todo Cine Latino lineup, which includes Los Cabos Mexico First winner “Llevate Mis Amores” (All of You), Daniel Guzman’s Best First Feature Goya winner “A Cambio de Nada” and Colombian Cesar Acevedo “Land and Shade.” Past buys include Spain’s Best Picture Goya winners for 2014 (David Trueba’s “Living Is Easy With Eyes Closed”) and 2015 (Alberto Rodriguez’s “Marshland”) and “A Wolf at the Door,” the feature debut of “Narcos” co-director Fernando Coimbra.