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San Sebastian: ’Nudo Mixteco,’ ’Paths of My Father,’ ‘Red Tree’ Set for Films in Progress

MADRID  —  Mauricio Osaki’s “The Paths of My Father,” Angeles Cruz’s “Nudo Mixteco” and Joan Gómez Endara’s “The Red Tree” will screen at San Sebastian’s Films in Progress, in a 36th edition which drinks from the seemingly bottomless well of directorial new talent in Latin America – all six of the pix-in-post are first features.

Sourced from Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Uruguay , the titles, which will seek completion finances, sales agents and distribution at San Sebastian, also draw a telling portrait of Latin America and beyond – paradoxically both the ever more connected globalized structures of its film financing and story telling and a world ravaged by broken families and a desperate need to reunite.

Maybe the most telling case in point is “The Paths of My Father. It is produced by Brazil’s Dezenove Som e Imagens, whose Sara Silveira has indefatigably supported new talent, and Poland’s Kraków Film Claster, but set and shot in Vietnam. Screened as a work in progress at the Seattle Festival this June, and expanding on Osaki’s multi-prized short “My Father’s Truck,” “The Paths of My Father” sees 11-year-old Vy join her absent father, a truck driver in Vietnam, after her grandma is hospitalized. Vy wants to escape to her hometown and reconnect with her roots; her father sees it as a chance to give her away, the Seattle longline ran.

A fiction feature presented at Guadalajara’s 2017 Co-production Meeting, “Nudo Mixteco” turns on three indigenous women’s doubts and fears as they battle for more freedom in their lives and sexuality. It unspools against the background of patron saint festivities in the Oaxaca Mixtec. Actress Angeles Cruz, star of Lucía Carreras’ “Tamara and the Lady Bug,” directs; writer-director Carreras (“Leap Year,” “See You Dad”) produces with Lola Ovando and Cruz.

A co-production between In Vivo Films and Viso Producciones, Joan Gómez Endara’s debut feature “The Red Tree” follows Eliécer, who just before his father’s death learns of a previously unknown half-sister named Esperanza. Eliécer is charged with taking the girl to the city in search of the mother who abandoned her when she was a baby.

In “Hlda’s Short Summer,” Hilda, a lonely woman in a small town, hasn’t heard from her son for years. When he announces he’s coming to visit. she sets about updating and improve her home and her lifestyle. But he cancels at the last minute. Tarkiofilm and Arissas produce this debut feature from Agustín Banchero.

Produced by Corpulenta Producciones and Avanti Pictures, “Non Distinguishing Features” is directed by Mexican Fernanda Valadez, who produced “The Darkest Days of Us.” Featured at 2019’s Berlinale Talents, it follows a mother searching desperately for her son, who has gone missing on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Brazil’s Polo MS Cinema E Vídeo Me and Raccord Produçoes Artísticas e Cinematográficas co-produce a final Fils in Progress contender, “Magdalena,” the debut feature of Brazil’s Madiano Marcheti. In it, hree strangers come together after the tragic discovery of the dead body of a trans woman in a soybean field.

2019 SAN SEBASTIAN WORKS IN PROGRESS

“The Paths of My Father,” (Mauricio Osaki, Brazil, Poland)

“Nudo Mixteco,” (Ángeles Cruz, Mexico)

“The Red Tree,” (Joan Gómez Endara, Colombia, Panama, France)

“Hilda’s Short Summer,” (Agustín Banchero, Uruguay, Brazil)

“Non Distinguishing Features,” (Fernanda Valadez, Mexico)

“Madalena,” (Madiano Marcheti, Brazil)

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