ARRI Media International will handle international sales on Stephan Komandarev’s “Directions,” which will see its world premiere as part of the Un Certain Regard section at next month’s Cannes Film Festival.
Announcing the deal signed with the film’s production companies Argo Film, Aktis Film Production and Sektor Film Productions, ARRI said it would also debut the film to buyers at the Cannes Film Market.
“Directions” is a road movie told through one night in the decline and fall of civilized society in modern-day Bulgaria. Opening with the story of an ambitious taxi driver, attempting to set up a new small business, who shoots his crooked banker and then himself after discovering the full scale of systematic corruption and injustice that is destined to destroy his dream and his life, the film then follows a series of other taxi drivers, working the night shift, as the incident becomes the subject of national debate on a call-in radio station.
“We first need to self-reflect and take a step back to understand the illogical society we live in. Only then are we ready to initiate real transformation and heal,” Moritz Hemminger, ARRI Media International’s director of sales and acquisitions, told Variety, speaking to the intent of Komandarev’s film. “ARRI is very proud to handle the international distribution rights for ‘Directions’ as its topic is recognizable in urban societies around the world today.”
Directed, co-written and produced by Komandarev “Directions” was shot in a series of single takes, each focused on a different taxi ride. It is a Bulgarian-German-Macedonian co-production, produced by Komandarev and Katya Trichkova for Argo Film; Stelios Ziannis and Vera Weit for Aktis Film Production; and Vladimir Anastasov and Angela Nestorovska for Sektor Film. It was co-written by Simeon Ventsislavov.
The film marks a return to Cannes’ Un Certain Regard program for Komandarev and his producing partner at Argo, Katya Trichkova. The pair co-produced Bogdan Mirica’s “DOGS,” which won the section’s FIPRESCI Prize last year. Komandarev’s previous two features as director, 2014’s “The Judgement” and 2008’s “The World is Big and Salvation Lurks Around the Corner,” were both chosen as the official Bulgarian entry for the foreign language Academy Award in their respective years.
ARRI Media International is the sales arm of ARRI Group. The company’s Cannes slate will also include family titles “Mountain Miracle: An Unexpected Friendship;” “Robby and Toby’s Fantastic Voyager;” “Vampire Sisters 3: Journey to Transylvania” and animated title “Ploey: You Never Fly Alone;” as well as biopic “In Love With Lou,” about psychoanalyst Lou Andreas-Salome’s relationship with a young German scholar.