“Rojo,” a noirish retro drama-thriller by fast-rising Argentinean helmer Benjamin Naishtat, has closed a number of territories, including France and China, after scooping three prizes at the San Sebastian Film Festival following its Toronto world premiere.
The distribution pacts sold by Paris-based sales agent Luxbox are for Benelux (September); Brazil (Vitrine Film); China (Time Vision); France (Condor); Greece (Spentzos); Switzerland (Filmcoop); and the U.K. (New Wave). Primer Plano will distribute in Argentina. Discussions are ongoing in Spain and other key territories.
Described by Variety in its review as “a witheringly provocative examination of temporary moral eclipse becoming permanent moral apocalypse,” “Rojo” features a star-studded Latin American lineup, including Argentina’s Dario Grandinetti (“Talk to Her,” “Julieta”), and Chile’s Alfredo Castro, a favorite thesp of compatriot Pablo Larrain.
Unspooling in a rustic province in 1975, the film is set against an ominous backdrop of mounting political violence that foreshadows Argentina’s approaching coup and Dirty War. “Full of unexpected formal flourishes and darkly witty dilemmas, this third film marks a magnificent step up from Naishtat’s already promising ‘History of Fear’ and ‘The Movement,’” wrote Variety.
Written by Naishtat, “Rojo” was lead-produced by Barbara Sarasola-Day and Federico Eubuszyc for Argentina’s Pucará Cine. Co-producers are Rachel Ellis at Desvía (Brazil), Emmanuel Chaumet’s Ecce Films (France), Marleen Slot at Viking Film (Netherlands), and Ingmar Trost’s Sutor Kolonko (Germany). “Rojo” is also co-produced by Bord Cadre Films and Jamal Veinal Zade (Switzerland).
Naishtat’s feature debut, “History of Fear,” world premiered in the Berlinale main competition in 2014.