LOS CABOS, Mexico – On the eve of the Los Cabos Int’l Film Fest, Oscilloscope Laboratories picked up U.S. rights, while Northern Banner snagged the Canadian rights, to upcoming 70 mm docu “Grand Prairie,” with the latter deal facilitated by acquisitions consultant Tom Davia of Cinemaven.
“Experimental projects from emerging filmmakers can be a risk, but given the nature and scope of this project, it is one definitely worth taking,” said Davia on behalf of Northern Banner, the Canadian distribution arm of Raven Banner Entertainment.
The feature-length docu debut of acclaimed cinematographer Evan Prosofsky participates in Los Cabos’ development program, Cine en Desarrollo. Told entirely through the immersive medium of real Imax 70 mm, “Grand Prairie” captures the everyday lives of young Albertans as they come of age in a series of vignettes, staged scenes and fly-on-the-wall instances.
Imagery in the fiction-doc-autobiographical hybrid will range from intimate character moments to grand landscapes, said Calgary-based producer Nicole Irene Dyck of GoodWork Studio.
“Grand Prairie is an exciting take on the documentary structure and it is a huge honor to be producing a project in such an ambitious and historical format, and to be working with Evan to push the boundaries and elasticity of the documentary form,” said Dyck, adding: “the festival has always been so supportive of my projects.”
Dyck previously participated in Los Cabos’ Figueroa Fund competition in 2015, working with Canadian producer Amy Darling of Media Darling who led the talks to secure a deal for the Canadian feature “I’m Not a Bad Person.” In terms negotiated at Los Cabos, The Film Factory’s Academy Award-nominated co-founders Simone Urdl and Jennifer Weiss signed on to preside over development and production on the project, which wrapped production earlier this year.
Last year, Los Cabos festival screened Andrew and Josh Huculiak’s Norwegian-language drama, “Violent,” which Dyck and Darling co-produced.
“Ultimately, “Grand Prairie” is a very personal story for me. The film will be a document of the people and places of Alberta, but more than anything, it will be an exploration of what it’s like to grow up somewhere, to live there, and to die there,” said Prosofsky. “It reaches for the universal truths about coming of age, growing old, and persisting through time. I want to know what makes us who we are, and what we leave behind,” he said in a statement.
This is not the first 70 mm film for New York-based Oscilloscope, which released Ron Fricke’s 70 mm docu “Samsara,” shot in 25 countries, in 2012. It has also released such gems as Ciro Guerra’s Oscar-nominated “Embrace of the Serpent” and Brazilian Anna Muylaert’s Sundance-winner “The Second Mother.”
Northern Banner Releasing is a full-service company that focuses on compelling genre films from around the world. Among its titles are the Indonesia-set “Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts,” Finnish boxer biopic “The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki,” and Canadian thriller “Blood Honey.”