Leading Argentine sales agent Meikincine has signed on to sell David Albala’s highly anticipated fiction debut “Jailbreak Pact,” (“Pacto de fuga”) on the international market.

Chile’s Storyboard Media produces the feature, with co-founders Carlos Núnez and Gabriela Sandoval executive producing and Calibre 71 and Enlazo Capital Films co-producing.

Fox will distribute theatrically in Chile starting in 2020.

The political thriller is a 130-minute nail-biter based on the real-life events which proceeded one of Chile and the world’s greatest prison escapes on Jan. 29, 1990. At the tail-end of Pinochet’s brutal dictatorship, 49 prisoners managed to escape their incarceration in Santiago de Chile through a series of tunnels dug using spoons, screwdrivers and other rudimentary tools.

Albala says that the practical aspects of the story impressed him most, and he felt compelled to show how a group of political prisoners were engineered to dig a tunnel more than 60 meters long, over 18 months, removing more than 55 tons of dirt and all without being discovered.

It’s a story that still holds tremendous socio-political weight in Chile, with the successful escape considered a symbolic victory against Pinochet’s murderous military regime and one of the strongest blows against the leader’s overinflated ego. It was in March the following year that democracy finally returned to Chile.

The script’s first draft was penned by Cecilia Ruz and later adapted by Loreto Caro-Valdes, Susana Quiroz and director David Albala. “Jailbreak” is Albala’s first fiction feature. He previously directed the documentary “PersPecPlejia,” and worked on several short films and TV projects in both Chile, and the U.S.

As military and police in Chilean cities like Santiago and Valparaiso are gaining international attention for politically motivated heavy-handed tactics not widely seen in the country since Pinochet’s era, “Jailbreak Pact” will fit well into the zeitgeist of large swathes of the Chilean public, and other countries experiencing similar issues in Latin America and around the world.

“Jailbreak,” features two of Chile’s most recognizable performers in Roberto Farías, best actor winner at the Fenix Film Awards and Mar del Plata Festival for his role in Pablo Larraín’s “The Club,” and Francisca Gavilán, who has her own best actress award from the Guadalajara Int. Film Festival for her role in Andrés Wood’s Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner “Violeta Went to Heaven.” They are joined by Benjamín Vicuña, the lead in Pablo Larraín’s “Fuga,” and Amparo Noguera whose impressive 2019 also includes roles in San Sebastian competition player “Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes” and Karlovy Vary and Sanfic competition player “The Man of the Future.”

“We are thrilled that Meikincine, one of the most important international sales agencies in Latin America, will be working with us to sell this wonderful Chilean film around the world,” Nuñez told Variety, when sharing the announcement.

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Credit: Storyboard Media