Cargo Film Snaps Up U.S. Rights to Sundance Contender ‘Once Upon a Time in Venezuela’

New York-based sales agent Cargo Film & Releasing has snapped up U.S. rights to feature documentary “Once Upon a Time in Venezuela” ahead of its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival.

Rise and Shine holds international rights to the doc, which bows in the World Cinema Documentary Competition in Park City later this month.

The film, which is shot over seven years, centres on the Venezuelan fishing village of Congo Mirador, a once prosperous commercial and social hub that has spiralled into chaos and violence – reflecting the turbulent political climate that has ravaged the South American country in recent years.

At the center of the village’s existential fight stands two female leaders, including a Chavez-worshipping coordinator who is not above bribery and intimidation, and her most vocal critic – a local school teacher.

“Once Upon a Time in Venezuela” is directed by Venezuelan filmmaker Anabel Rodríguez Ríos and produced by Sepp R. Brudermann.

The film is exec produced by Claudia Lepage and co-produced by Arash T. Riahi, Nancy Harrison, Joe Torres and Malu Carneiro Campos. Producers include Sancocho Público A.C., Spiraleye Productions, Golden Girls Films, Pacto Films and Tres Cinematografía.

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Cargo’s slate includes “Becoming Who I Was” and “Seed: The Untold Story” while Berlin-based Rise and Shine’s slate includes Berlinale contender “Garage People.”

Sundance runs from Jan. 23 to Feb. 2.

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