Kino Lorber has scooped North American rights to the Cannes Film Festival’s jury prize winner “Bacurau,” a Brazilian western thriller directed by Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles.
Mendonca Filho’s follow up to “Aquarius,” another Cannes competition title, “Bacurau” is set in the near future, in a small imaginary Brazilian village that becomes a target of armed, sinister Americans after the town’s 94-year-old matriarch passes away. A fierce, bloody confrontation takes place when the townspeople band together to protect their community from these white outsiders who have come all the way to hunt them for sport.
The political allegory stars Sônia Braga, the Brazilian actress who also toplined “Aquarius,” as well as Udo Kier and Bárbara Colen.
“‘Bacurau’ has been endowed with such a heady mix of political commentary, science fiction, humanism and Western genre tropes that audiences are sure to be seduced,” said Kino Lorber senior vice president Wendy Lidell. “And if that were not enough, the performances of Sonia Braga and Udo Kier are both outsized and pitch perfect at the same time. ‘Bacurau’ has all the ingredients to be a box office winner,” added Lidell.
“Bacurau” was one of the best-reviewed movies of this Cannes Film Festival and was awarded the Jury Prize (shared with “Les Miserables”) from this year’s jury president, the Oscar-winning director Alejandro Inarritu.
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The lavishly-lensed movie marks the first directorial/screenwriting collaboration between Mendonça and Dornelles, the Brazilian helmer’s longtime production designer. It was produced by Emilie Lesclaux (Cinemascopio), Saïd Ben Saïd and Michel Merkt (SBS Productions).
Lidell negotiated the deal with Kino Lorber president and CEO Richard Lorber and Kevin Chneiweiss from SBS Productions.
“Bacurau” will have its theatrical release in early 2020, followed by a roll-out on VOD and home video.