You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Berlinale: Gullane, Upside Link on Luiz Bolognesi’s ‘Ex-Shaman’ (EXCLUSIVE)

The film portrays one of the Amazon’s last surviving shamans

Gullane, one of Brazil’s biggest production companies, has tapped Paris-based Upside Distribution to handle international sales on “Ex-Shaman,” which world premieres in the Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama section.

Produced by Lais Bodansky, “Ex-Shaman” is the second feature from Luiz Bolognesi, who also wrote the script. The helmer’s  debut, “Rio 2096, a Story of Love and Fury,” won the Annecy Festival’s best picture Crystal in 2013.

“Ex-Shaman” follows Perpera, the elderly former shaman of the Amazon’s Pater Surui community, and one of the few people alive who grew up without contact with white invaders. His people are now plundered by logging companies and corralled by evangelists, but still turn to him in crisis, when he once more invokes the forest spirits.

“This shaman’s fight to keep his traditions alive is captured with poetry and unique cinematography,” said Upside’s Antoine Bertrand-Hardy.

Though a documentary feature, “Ex-Shaman” is shot in CinemaScope and carefully composed, often of symbolic images, such as of mist over a striking local river whose spirits once brought Perpera fish.

“Most documentaries on indigenous subjects are done in a spirit of urgency, without rigor. I wanted to capture the spiritual greatness and richness of their culture,” Bolognesi said.

“The film tackles a vital current issue,” said Gullane’s Fabiano Gullane. “Indigenous rights, ethnocide and deforestation affect people as far apart as indigenous groups in North Dakota in their fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline to aboriginal Australians in their struggle against historical injustices.”

More Film

  • 'All These Small Moments' Review

    Film Review: 'All These Small Moments'

    The magic of writer-director Melissa B. Miller Costanzo’s “All These Small Moments” can be found within the intimacy of the scenarios, the authenticity of her earnest characterizations, and the accessibility of the actors’ honest performances. In her deftly polished directorial debut, Costanzo dovetails the primary story about a teen’s coming of age with a secondary [...]

  • Bruce Tufeld Dead: Hollywood Agent and

    Hollywood Agent and Manager Bruce Tufeld Dies at 66

    Bruce Tufeld, a Hollywood agent and manager who once repped stars like Rob Lowe, Laura Dern, and Kelsey Grammer, died Tuesday in Los Angeles as a result of complications from liver cancer. He was 66. The son of respected television announcer Richard “Dick” Tufeld and Adrienne Tufeld, Bruce began his career as an assistant at ICM [...]

  • Bruce Dern

    Film News Roundup: Bruce Dern's 'The Lears' Bought by Vertical for February Release

    In today’s film news roundup, Bruce Dern’s “The Lears” and “Angels Are Made of Light” are acquired, Cold War drama “Stanley Cage” is launched and a documentary about Madonna’s early music career gets a release. ACQUISITIONS Vertical Entertainment has acquired North American rights from NeoClassics Films to “The Lears,” starring Bruce Dern in a modern-day [...]

  • Octavia Spencer Bryce Dallas Howard

    Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard to Reunite for Comedy 'Fairy Tale Ending'

    Octavia Spencer and Bryce Dallas Howard will reunite for the ensemble comedy “Fairy Tale Ending.” Jim Hecht (“Ice Age: The Meltdown) and Tracy McMillan (“Marvel’s Runaways”) are writing the screenplay. Howard will also produce the Universal movie through her Nine Muses Entertainment alongside Eric Carlson and Susan Carlson. Seth MacFarlane and Erica Huggins will produce [...]

  • Robert Smith, Longtime Executive at DuArt

    Robert Smith, Longtime Executive at New York's DuArt Film Labs, Dies at 88

    Robert Smith, a longtime executive with New York’s DuArt Film Labs, died Jan. 11 in Montvale, N.J. He was 88. Smith spent some 62 years with DuArt, the film processing and post-production facility founded in 1922 in the penthouse of an automobile garage in Midtown. Smith rose to president of DuArt before retiring in 2015. [...]

  • Bird Box

    Los Angeles On-Location Feature Filming Surges 12.2% in 2018

    On-location feature filming in Greater Los Angeles expanded impressively in 2018, gaining 12.2% to 4,377 shooting days, according to FilmL.A. Production activity for feature films rose 15.5% to 1,078 shooting days during the fourth quarter, with 146 days coming from projects receiving California tax credits — including Netflix’s “Bird Box,” Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content