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Cannes: The Match Factory Boards Francisca Alegria’s Features Debut (EXCLUSIVE)

Cannes: The Match Factory Boards Francisca
Courtesy of Jirafa Films

Leading arthouse sales agent the Match Factory has added Francisca Alegria’s debut feature, “The Cow Who Sang a Song About the Future,” to its sales slate at Cannes, where it has four films in the festival. The Chilean director won the best international fiction short award at the Sundance Film Festival in 2017.

The feature, a combination of the fantastic film genre with Latin American magical realism, was developed at the Sundance Labs, with support from Cinereach, the Rotterdam Film Festival, Berlinale’s World Cinema Fund and Chile’s Ministry of Culture.

As well as winning at Sundance, Alegria’s most recent short, “And the Whole Sky Fit in the Dead Cow’s Eye,” screened at the Telluride, Toronto, New York and San Francisco film festivals.

Alegria’s feature film follows Cecilia and her two children, who after a long time away, pay a visit to her father’s dairy farm in Valdivia, Chile. “As she runs into the ghost of her mother, Magdalena, whose suicide left a deep division in the family, agonized animals begin to sing about the future,” according to The Match Factory.

The film is produced by Jirafa Films — led by Bruno Bettati and Matias de Bourguignon — an auteur-driven feature film production company based in Chile. Jirafa’s previous films in Cannes include “Bonsái” by Cristián Jiménez (Un Certain Regard, 2011), “The Summer of Flying Fish” by Marcela Said (Directors’ Fortnight, 2013) and “Huacho” by Alejandro Fernández Almendras (Critics’ Week, 2009).

Tom Dercourt’s Cinema Défacto from France and Vania Catani’s Bananeira Filmes from Brazil are co-producers.

Jirafa is in Cannes looking for gap financing for the feature, which is expected to start shooting in Valdivia in April 2020.