U.K.-based documentary specialist Dogwoof has announced a string of deals for their slate, which includes a topical tale about the earliest days of the COVID-19 outbreak, three titles in the Best of Fest section at documentary festival IDFA, which runs Nov. 18-Dec. 6, and an Oscar contender.
“76 Days” (pictured), a powerful verité study of the early days of COVID-19 in Wuhan, China, sold to Sky (U.K.), Globo (Brazil), VRT (Belgium), Channel 8 and YesDocu (Israel), DR (Denmark), and VGTV (Norway).
The film, directed by Hao Wu, Weixi Chen and Anonymous, was recently nominated for a Gotham award. It screened at the Toronto Film Festival, and features in IDFA’s Docs for Sale section. MTV Documentary Films, a division of MTV Studios, acquired the North American rights to the documentary last month from CAA Media Finance Group. Dogwoof will release “76 Days” in the U.K. on Jan. 22.
The film is an inside look at the coronavirus wards of four hospitals in Wuhan at the start of the outbreak, profiling the doctors, nurses, hospital workers, patients and families dealing with the – at that time – unknown virus.
Elizabeth Lo’s debut feature “Stray,” included in IDFA’s Best of Fest, sold to Lucky Dogs (Scandinavia), Madman (Australia and New Zealand), Against Gravity (Poland), Cinema Delicatessen (The Netherlands), Hooray (Taiwan), and Ascot Elite (GAS).
The film takes a dog’s eye-view of the streets of Istanbul, where strays are a highly regarded and deeply ingrained part of the culture. The documentary follows the adventures of three canine outcasts and offers an intimate portrait of the city and people.
The pic premiered in Tribeca, and took home Hot Docs’ Best International Documentary award. Magnolia took rights for North America and a U.K. release is planned for Spring 2021 from Dogwoof.
Emmy Award-winning director, editor and composer David Osit’s “Mayor” has been acquired by Vice Media Group, and will be featured in “The Short List with Suroosh Alvi,” an upcoming series from Vice World News, a newly-launched content hub. “The Short List” is a collection of the world’s best documentaries curated by Vice founder Suroosh Alvi.
“Mayor” is a real-life political saga following Musa Hadid, the Christian mayor of Ramallah, a portrait of dignity amidst the madness and absurdity of endless occupation.
Another IDFA Best of Fests title, “Mayor” premiered in CPH:Dox and was awarded Next: New Wave Award as well as The Reva and David Logan Grand Jury Award at Full Frame Documentary Film Festival. Dogwoof will release “Mayor” in the U.K. on Jan. 1.
Maite Alberdi’s critically acclaimed “The Mole Agent,” which is Chile’s Oscar entry in the International Feature category and is featured in IDFA’s Best of Fests, will be released in the Netherlands via Cinema Delicatessen while a U.K. release is slated for Dec. 11 via Dogwoof, followed by a BBC Storyville broadcast in 2021.
Previous sales include Madman (Australia and New Zealand), NonStop (Scandinavia), Yesdocu (Israel), DDdream (China), and Globo (Brazil). Gravitas released the film in the U.S. ahead of its airdate on POV.
The feature documentary follows Sergio, an 83-year-old widower, recruited to be a spy in a retirement home when one of the resident’s children becomes suspicious of the conditions. Alderdi’s film is a stylish, funny, observational documentary, which slowly reveals the heart of the film – a meditation on compassion, loneliness and how society discards the elderly.