×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Films Boutique Closes France, Japan on ‘Lunana’ (EXCLUSIVE)

LOS ANGELES  — Films Boutique has closed France and Japan on Himalayan crowdpleaser “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom,” by Bhutanese filmmaker Pawo Choyning Dorji, rolling off its market premiere at the AFM.

French rights on “Lunana” have been acquired by ARP Selection, one of the country’s most prominent art film distributors with a strong line in world cinema. The deal was negotiated between Films Boutique CEO Jean-Christophe Simon and ARP partners Michele Halberstadt and Laurent Pétin.

“The film is an ode to nature, to beauty, to simple and true feelings. We just fell under its spell,” said Halberstadt.

“ARP Selection did such fantastic work with ‘The Story of the Weeping Camel.’ We couldn’t dream of a better home for the film,” Simon added.

Doma Inc, distributor of Asghar Farhadi’s “The Salesman,” has acquired rights to Japan in a deal negotiated by Films Boutique COO Louis Balsan and Doma CEO Eri Sawaki.

“Lunana” turns on a young teacher in modern Bhutan dispatched in disgrace during his compulsory service to a glacial Himalayan village called Lunana, where he has to teach with no electricity nor textbooks and a stoic yak who’s hares the classroom. He begins to learn of the hardship in the lives of the beautiful children he teaches, and learns from the villagers’ spiritual strength.

Popular on Variety

The film world premiered at the BFI London Film Festival’s family section and in Busan.

The fiction feature directorial debut of director Dorji, producer of “Hema Hema: Sing Me A Song While I Wait,” which played Toronto in 2016, “Lunana” is produced by Dorji AND Stephanie Lai at their Thimphu-based Dangphu Dingphu: 3 Pigs production company.

“Lunana” was shot on-location with non-pro actors at what is said to be the world’s most remote school, located in the Himalayan glaciers at an altitude of 16,500 feet. Due to the remoteness and lack of facilities, the film was shot on solar charged batteries.

More Film

  • Lee Byung-hun stars in "The Man

    Lee Byung-hun’s ‘Man Standing Next’ Secures 2020 Asia Theatrical Releases (EXCLUSIVE)

    Showbox’s political drama “The Man Standing Next” has secured releases in multiple territories in Asia. The film was picked up by Falcon for Indonesia, The Klockworx for Japan, Viva Communications for the Philippines, Shaw Renters for Singapore and by Moviecloud for Taiwan. Release dates in each territory have yet to be confirmed. Set 40 days [...]

  • Lulu Wang and Zhao Shuzhen'The Farewell'

    Zhao Shuzhen on Stealing Scenes in Her First American Movie, 'The Farewell'

    A year ago, 76-year-old actor Zhao Shuzhen shot her first American movie, “The Farewell,” based on writer-director Lulu Wang’s very personal family story. In November, Shuzhen found herself making her first visit to the States, where she earned standing ovations from audiences and posed for pictures with stars like Robert Pattinson at parties. Then she [...]

  • Jennifer Lopez and Director Lorene Scafaria

    'Hustlers' DP Todd Banhazl Discusses How Not to Shoot With the Male Gaze

    Cinematographer Todd Banhazl had to rethink conventional wisdom in shooting Jennifer Lopez starrer “Hustlers.” What sort of approach did you and director Lorene Scafaria discuss in terms of how you were going to shoot the women and create these strong images of strippers? From the beginning, we talked about this idea of control and the [...]

  • A Hidden Life Movie

    Film News Roundup: Terrence Malick's 'A Hidden Life' Screened at Vatican Film Library

    In today’s film news roundup, “A Hidden Life” is shown at the Vatican, “Limerence” finds a home, Dave Baustista’s “My Spy” moves, and the DGA honors two veteran members. VATICAN SCREENING Terrence Malick’s “A Hidden Life” received a rare private screening at the Vatican Film Library this week. The movie centers on Austrian farmer and [...]

  • Wet Season

    'Wet Season' Star Yeo Yann Yann on the Need for Quality Chinese-Language Films

    Malaysia’s Yeo Yann Yann wiped away tears that weren’t purely of joyous triumph just minutes after receiving the 2019 Golden Horse Award for best actress in Singaporean director Anthony Chen’s “Wet Season.” The film plays in the New Chinese Cinema section of this week’s International Film Festival & Awards (IFFAM). Emotion welled up as she [...]

  • Wolf Totem

    Juben Productions Stretches From Peter Chan to Chinese Zombies

    Beijing Juben Productions has taken over rights to the popular “Wolf Totem” novel from China Film Group and is working on a sequel to be delivered in 2021 or Chinese New Year 2022. It also has a zombie film up its sleeve, as well as a British co-production about Shakespeare and a Chinese drama with [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content