×

Laszlo Nemes’ ‘Sunset’ Bought by Sony Pictures Classics, Global Buyers (EXCLUSIVE)

Sony Pictures Classics and a raft of distributors worldwide have picked up Laszlo Nemes’ “Sunset,” the widely anticipated follow-up to his Oscar-winning Holocaust drama, “Son of Saul.” The film is world premiering in competition at the Venice Film Festival on Monday and will go on to play at the Toronto Film Festival.

Negotiated by Playtime, the deal re-teams Nemes with Sony Pictures Classics, which acquired “Son of Saul” in 2015 at Cannes, where the movie won the Grand Jury Prize, and championed it through the awards season. “Son of Saul” ended up winning the foreign-language Oscar and a Golden Globe, as well as a BAFTA and other awards, and established Nemes as a major new voice. Sony Pictures will distribute “Sunset” in North America and Australia.

“Sunset,” which is produced by Gabor Sipos and Gabor Rajna of Hungarian banner Laokoon Filmgroup (“Son of Saul”), is set right before World War I and follows 20-year-old Irisz Leiter, who arrives in dazzling Budapest to work in her late parents’ legendary hat store. Leiter is suddenly confronted with her past and starts searching for answers about her family before stumbling upon dark secrets.

Also a co-producer, Playtime has sold the film to France (Ad Vitam), Germany (MFA), Spain (Avalon), Greece (Filmtrade), U.K. (Curzon), Italy (Movie Inspired), Japan (Fine Films), and Venezuela, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia (California Filmes). Mozinet will release the film in Hungary, where the story is set. The Hungarian Film Fund also co-produced “Sunset.”

Other deals were signed for Benelux (Cineart), Austria (Thimfilm Filmverleih), China (Film Archive), CIS (Russian World Vision), Israel (Lev Cinemas), Portugal (Midas), Taiwan (Flash Forward Entertainment), Romania (Voodoo Films), Norway (Tour de Force), Finland (Future Film) and Iceland (Bio Paradis).

“The themes weaved in ‘Sunset’ are dear to Nemes,” said Playtime co-founder Nicolas Brigaud-Robert. “It follows individuals who are not traditional heroes, who don’t have control over what surrounds them and are on a journey to find answers. In ‘Son of Saul,’ the main character is facing the absurdity and the horror of the Shoah, and in ‘Sunset,’ Irisz Leiter witnesses the chaos of Budapest and downfall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Beyonce Knowles'The Lion King' film premiere,

    ABC Announces Behind-the-Scenes Special for Beyoncé's 'Lion King' LP

    ABC has announced a new behind-the-scenes look into the making of Beyoncé’s “The Lion King: The Gift” LP, which is set to air September 16 on ABC at 10 p.m. EST. Titled “Beyoncé Presents: Making the Gift,” the new hour-long special will allow viewers to “experience the process” behind the “Lion King” companion album, according [...]

  • Jason Lei Howden, Samara Weaving and

    Daniel Radcliffe On Acting With Weapons Nailed To Your Hands

    How did “Guns Akimbo” director and writer Jason Lei Howden convince Daniel Radcliffe to play a character with guns nailed to his hands? Easy, he sent him the script. Radcliffe joined Howden and “Ready or Not’s” breakout star Samara Weaving in the Variety’s Toronto Film Festival studio, presented by AT&T to talk the limits of [...]

  • Box Office: It Chapter Two Maintains

    Box Office: 'It: Chapter Two' Continues International Reign With $47 Million

    Pennywise’s reign of terror hasn’t wavered: Warner Bros.’ “It Chapter Two” maintained first place on box office charts, led by another strong showing overseas. The sequel, based on Stephen King’s horror novel, generated another $47 million at the international box office for a foreign tally of $169 million. After two weeks of release, “It Chapter [...]

  • First still from the set of

    Taika Waititi’s 'Jojo Rabbit' Wins Top Prize at Toronto Film Festival Awards

    Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit” has won the coveted People’s Choice Award at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. The honor positions the film for a potential Oscar run and bolsters its awards chances. That’s good news for Fox Searchlight, which must have been disappointed by the lackluster critical reception for the movie, a dark comedy [...]

  • Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez star

    Box Office: 'Hustlers' Racks Up Solid $33 Million Debut, 'Goldfinch' Bombs

    “Hustlers” rolled in the Benjamins this weekend, collecting $33.2 million when it debuted in 3,250 North American theaters. Boosted by rave reviews and stellar word of mouth, “Hustlers” beat expectations and now ranks as the best start for an STX film, along with the biggest live-action opening weekend for stars Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu. [...]

  • German Cinema Is Diverse, But Is

    German Cinema Is Varied, But Is It Too Risk Averse?

    One of the strengths of German cinema is its diversity, says Simone Baumann, managing director of the national film promotion agency German Films. As well as the three films at Toronto directed by female German helmers, there was also German filmmaker Thomas Heise’s documentary film essay “Heimat Is a Space in Time.” Then there were [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content