Spain’s Latido Films has snagged worldwide sales rights – with the exception of Peru, Chile and Argentina – to Chilean filmmaker Maria Paz Paz Gonzalez’s feature debut, “Lina de Lima.” The dramedy’s trailer is launching exclusively in Variety ahead of its world premiere at the Toronto Festival Discovery sidebar.
“Following our tradition of accompanying new talents in their incursion inro the international market, and in particular of first directors in the world of fiction, ‘Lina de Lima’ meant for us the discovery of an original voice like that of González,” said Latido head of acquisitions and festivals, Oscar Alonso.
He added: “She tells the immigration drama from a luminous point of view not previously seen: All this through a female character who reverses the preset codes and to which Magaly Solier confers an overflowing capacity for empathy. “
Solier, whose career-launching turn in Claudia Llosa’s Berlin Golden Bear winning “The Milk of Sorrow” has made her one of Peru’s most prominent actresses today, is front and center in “Lina de Lima.”
She plays the titular Lina, a Peruvian immigrant in Santiago, Chile who struggles to make a new life in her adopted country as her family back home, her son in particular, grows ever more distant. Like many of her fellow migrants, she sends money home to support her family.
As she prepares for her annual Christmas trip home, she realizes, to her chagrin, that her teenage son has become more self-absorbed and involved with her former husband’s new family.
Produced by Chile’s Giancarlo Nasi and Maite Alberdi along with co-producers Gema Juarez Allen of Gema Films, Argentina, and Peru’s Brian Jacobs of Carapulkra Films, “Lina de Lima” was put through the BAL Labs in Buenos Aires during BAFICI, and the New Works In Progress Forum at Seattle International Film Festival.
In her director’s statement, Gonzalez noted that the growing migration wave of recent years in Chile is what inspired her to write this story.
“Attracted by Chile’s economic stability, Peruvians, Colombians, Haitians, Venezuelans and Dominicans have traveled to the end of the world looking to start a new life,” she said, noting: “Many arrived with the idea that they would only be here for a while but, as happens everywhere, many ended up staying for longer than they imagined.”
Opting to take a closer look at the plight of women migrants in particular, Gonzalez sought to delve deeper: “Beyond the misadventures of migration, I was interested in taking a closer look at that moment when we decide to reinvent ourselves far from home; the moment we begin to leave behind one of our many lives to open the page of our story that is to come. I felt that fiction would allow me to see more clearly this internal process of change, so subtle yet so transcendental in a woman’s life,” she said.
“For me, this movie tells the story of someone who begins to change their skin. Stopping precisely at that moment of crisis in which a woman looks at herself with some disagreement, and begins to find her real self. This process, which seems quite universal to me, can be very deep but also very clumsy, maybe that’s why everything becomes a comic drama,” González concluded.
“It’s an innovative auteur film with light, music and some elements of comedy that makes it visually interesting and, at the same time, appealing to audiences,” said lead producer Nasi of Quijote Films. “This film is different, innovative, and feminine to the bone. It’s liberating, both narratively and formally.”