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Toronto-based sales agent Syndicado Film Sales has acquired world rights to “Ivana the Terrible,” the second feature by Ivana Mladenovic, ahead of its world premiere at the Locarno Film Festival.

Mladenovic writes, directs and stars in the acerbic comedy about a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Inspired by true events and shot in her hometown of Kladovo, Serbia, it features her real family and friends portraying themselves on screen. The film is a co-production between Romania’s microFILM and Serbia’s Dunav 84.

“‘Ivana the Terrible’ is a film that reaches new heights of self-reflection,” says Aleksandar Govedarica of Syndicado, a world sales and production company established in 2016 that specializes in authorial, cinematic and character-driven narratives. “We are thrilled to work with Ivana Mladenovic on her second feature film.”

Producer Ada Solomon, of microFILM, says Syndicado brings a unique perspective and “in-depth understanding” to “Ivana.” “We decided to go with a company that fell in love with the film, with people that are originally coming from our part of the world, but now are functioning in a different cultural environment,” she says.

Describing “Ivana” as “different from everything that we’ve done so far,” she adds: “We knew that this film is a challenge in terms of positioning and we felt that a company that is specialized in documentaries with a theatrical potential would be the ideal partner for us to find as wide as possible exposure.”

“Ivana the Terrible” is the follow-up to Mladenovic’s critically acclaimed “Soldiers. Story From Ferentari,” which world premiered in Toronto in 2017. Variety described her first narrative feature as “a likably ramshackle, seemingly semi-improvised ‘free adaptation’” of Adrian Schiop’s semi-autobiographical novel about a gay romance in Bucharest’s Roma slum. The Serbian-born Mladenovic is based in Romania.