San Sebastian: Chilean Thriller ‘Immersion,’ Starring Larraín Regular Alfredo Castro, Swooped on by Latido (EXCLUSIVE)

Credit: Araucaria Cine

In down-to-the-wire San Sebastian Festival business, Madrid-based Latido Films has pounced on world sales rights to Nicolás Postiglione’s debut feature “Immersion” (“Inmersión”), a Chilean suspense-thriller – and potential political metaphor for those who want to see it – starring Pablo Larraín regular Alfredo Castro (“The Club,” “No”).

“Immersion” is based on a screenplay by Postiglione and two film directors in their own right: Fast-rising Argentine director Agustín Toscano whose 2018 “The Snatch Thief” played in Cannes Directors’ Fortnight; and Moises Sepúlveda, whose “The Illiterate” premiered at Venice’s International Critics’ Week.

Before being shopped at San Sebastian, “Immersion” was screened in late August at the inaugural Lima-Toulouse Cine en Construcción.

Postiglione’s feature debut, “Immersion” turns on a middle-class father Ricardo (Castro) who takes his two daughters to their lakeside family house in southern Chile.

Out on a yacht one day, they see three young local fishermen waving at them from another boat which is rapidly taking on water. Ricardo refuses to go and help, arguing they look suspicious, much to his older daughter’s exasperation. His prejudices will have dramatic consequences.

“The film turns on universal issues, such as masculinity and family conflicts,” said producer Isabel Orellana, at Chile’s Aracauria Cine. “Ricardo tries to protect his daughters but in completely the wrong way,” she added.

Star of four Pablo Larraín movies, Castro was key to the production, its maker said. The film posed large challenges, such as shooting scenes of high tension on open water and maintaining a sense of events happening in real time. “Alfredo’s acting was so spot on,” said Postiglione. “His performance will reverberate with spectators,” Orellana added.

“Immersion” is produced by Chile’s Juntos Films, the new production company set up by Francisco Hervé, Daniela Raviola and Sepúlveda, Araucaria Cine, which produced Berlin Panorama player “You’ll Never Be Alone,” and Nicolás San Martín and Alejandro Wise’s Primate Lab as well as Mexico’s Whisky.

Hervé, Orellana, Sepulveda, San Martin, Wise and Whisky’s Juan Bernardo González serve as producers.

The film typifies a strong focus in Latido Films pick-ups, mixing a first-time Latin American director and a thriller format with a political underbelly, elements found, for example, in Colombian Laura Mora’s “Killing Jesus,” a Latido sales hit.

“The film can be taken as a great suspense thriller but it’s also highly relevant to the times we live in,” Latido’s Oscar Alonso argued. “When something unexpected occurs, you can show solidarity or protect your own position. Both reactions carry consequences.”