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Sony Pictures Classics Nabs Nadine Labaki’s Palme d’Or Contender ‘Capernaum’

Sony Pictures Classics has nabbed North American and Latin American rights to Cannes competition title “Capernaum,” a drama from Lebanese director Nadine Labaki about a boy who sues his parents.

CAA Media Finance brokered the distribution deal on behalf of the filmmakers with Wild Bunch, which represents the international rights.

Sony Pictures Classics distributed Labaki’s previous film, “Where Do We Go Now?,” which world-premiered in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard and won a special mention in 2011.

“Capernaum” centers on 12-year-old Zein, who takes his parents to court “for giving me life” in a world of pain and suffering. It is written by Labaki, along with Jihad Hojeily, Michelle Kesrouani, Georges Khabbaz and Labaki’s husband, Khaled Mouzanar, who also produced the film and composed the music.

The movie stars Labaki, Zain Alrafeea, Yordanos Shifera and Treasure Bankole.

“It is wonderful to have the opportunity to collaborate once again with Sony Pictures Classics. ‘Capernaum’ is very special to me, and with the passion Tom and Michael have for this film, I know this is the ideal partnership,” Labaki said.

Sony Pictures Classics said: “Nadine Labaki is one of the world’s great filmmakers. ‘Capernaum’ is an emotionally profound experience about the world we live in and promises to be a triumph in Cannes. Nadine Labaki’s moment as writer-director is here and now.”

Sony plans to open the film in December, qualifying the movie for year-end awards consideration.

The Arabic-language film has its premiere May 18, the penultimate day of the Cannes Film Festival. Labaki made her feature debut with “Caramel,” which played in Directors’ Fortnight in 2007.

Gaumont has “Capernaum” for France.

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