Paris-based sales outfit Charades has boarded Pierre Pinaud’s sophomore feature “The Rose Maker,” a comedy with French star Catherine Frot (“The Midwife”), along with “Africa Mia,” a documentary about the birth of Afro-Cuban music, as well as the U.K. drama “Lynn + Lucy.”
Pinaud will be directing “The Rose Maker,” written in collaboration with the popular French helmer Philippe Le Guay, whose credits include the critically acclaimed romantic comedy “The Women on the 6th Floor.”
Penned by Pinaud and Fadette Drouard, the film is a social comedy starring Frot as Eve, a childless woman who has isolated herself from others and is a famous rose maker on the verge on bankruptcy. In a desperate attempt to rescue her business, she hires Serge, Nadège and Fred, three lame ducks enrolled in a back-to-work program who do not have any horticulture skills, and unexpectedly finds out that nurturing others is even more rewarding than creating flowers.
“Creating roses is one of our French specialties, just like perfume and gastronomy. It is a world of its own with its vocabulary, its places, its economy, its contests, its masterpieces, its struggles…and it’s also and mostly a world that has never been explored in French cinema,” said Pinaud.
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Frot stars opposite several young actors from diverse backgrounds. Set to start shooting this summer, “The Rose Maker” is produced by Stéphanie Carreras and Philippe Pujo at Estrella Productions (“Rock the Casbah”).
A cinematic documentary directed by Richard Minier and Edouard Salier, “Africa Mia” opens in the midst of the Cold War and follows 10 young promising musicians from Mali who are sent to Cuba to study music and strengthen cultural links between the two socialist regimes. Minier is a French music producer who had the idea of bringing the band back together after meeting a former member of the band in Bamako. “Africa Mia” is produced by Universal Music France/OFF Productions, Srab Films (“Les Misérables”) and Heavy Surf. It will be delivered in the fall.
“Lynn + Lucy,” produced by Rosetta Productions (“Beats”) and BBC Films, is directed by Fyzal Boulifa. The film follows Lynn and Lucy, a pair of 20-something childhood friends whose strong bond is tested when tragedy hits Lucy’s family, triggering gossip, mistrust, hysteria and violence within their small town.
At Cannes, Charades will also kick off sales on “Little Nicholas” (pictured), the hand-drawn animated adaptation of the classic French book series, and Gilles de Maistre’s “Demain est à nous,” a documentary feature about children around the world who are advocating for social justice causes.