Scandinavian sales outfit The Yellow Affair has picked up all rights outside North America and South America on the Lena Olin vehicle “Maya Dardel.”
The feature marks the directorial debut of U.S. poet/novelist Zachary Cotler who shares the directing and writing credits with Polish-born but U.S.-based Magdalena Zyzak. The duo just won best screenplay for the film earlier this month at the Prague Independent Film Festival, while Lena Olin (“Chocolat”) picked up best actress.
Olin plays Maya Dardel, an internationally respected poet and novelist, living in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California. One day she announces on the radio that she intends to end her life and that young male writers may compete to become the executor of her estate. They are challenged intellectually, emotionally and erotically, until one of them begins to fathom Maya’s end game.
Co-stars include Rosanna Arquette (“Crash”), Joardan Gavaris (“The Sea of Trees”), Nathan Keyes (“Britney Ever After”) and Alexander Koch (“Always Shine”).
The U.S./Polish film was produced by Mike S. Ryan, Morgan Jon Fox, Dariusz Jabłoński, Violetta Kamińska and Izabela Wójcik.
Samuel Goldwyn and Orion Pictures acquired North American rights at the last Austin’s SXSW Festival where the film first bowed under the title “A Critically Endangered Species”. The U.S. release is set for Nov. 2017.
The Yellow Affair partner and sales director Chris Howard told Variety: “We’re thrilled to have picked up a film of such high artistic integrity, with an outstanding performance from Lena Olin and Rosanna Arquette, and a thought-provoking and engaging storyline.”
“We believe the film can appeal to audiences all over the world, “added Howard, who feels the English-language film is a nice addition to the predominantly Nordic originated content on the company’s line-up.
The Scandinavian sales shingle will introduce “Maya Dardel” to world buyers at New Nordic Films (Aug. 22-25), the confab running parallel to the Norwegian Intl. Film Festival in Haugesund (Aug. 19-25).
The Yellow Affair will also represent in Haugesund the Swedish film “Garden Lane,” screening at the festival’s Nordic Focus sidebar. Olof Spaak’s directorial debut is based on a true story about two children who grow up with drug abusing parents. In one of the title roles is this year’s Shooting Star Karin Franz Körlof (“The Wife,” “A Serious Game”). Produced by Primodron’s Sofie Palage, the feature was voted best film at Italy’s Giffoni Film Festival.