Set for its world premiere on Aug. 11 at the Fantasia Int’l Film Festival in Montreal, Uruguay’s “Ghosting Gloria” (“Muerto con Gloria”) presents a genre mash-up of comedy, romance and some spicy paranormal encounters with a poltergeist.
Guido Rud’s FilmSharks snapped up worldwide sales and remake rights to the pic in June last year. He’s already sold it to streaming platform Pantaya in the U.S., Av-Jet Int’l Media of Taiwan and Movistar Plus in Spain. Latin America, Japan and Korean distribution deals are under discussion while remake rights talks are underway in the U.S., Spain and Mexico, said Gud.
The titular Gloria, played by Stefania Tortorella, is a single 30-year-old working at a bookstore who has never had an orgasm. She finally finds her ideal lover but the only caveat is that he’s the very dead owner of the place she’s renting. She begins to delight in his visits but when she brings over a live date, her ghost lover manifests its displeasure.
For writer-director Mauro Sarser, who co-directed the film with Marcela Matta, the idea sprung from a friend’s anecdote. “She supposedly lived for a few months with a presence that she could not see but could feel,” he recalled. “The story had a lot of interesting details but while thinking about writing it, I thought that it would be more original if, instead of being a scary story, it would be one of love, of a sexual and loving bond that formed between them,” he continued.
“This opened the doors for us to explore issues that have more to do with the real world than the supernatural. The supernatural became an excuse, a metaphor to talk about the psyche and of human bonds,” he added.
A good part of the story takes place in the bookstore where Gloria works and confides in her best friend. “In the beginning it was for a purely practical reason, I loved that library and wanted to film something there,” said Sarser who also plays the manager of the bookstore. “We also had several incredible anecdotes from bookseller friends about unusual situations with their clients,” he asserted, adding: “In fact, most of the dialogue with the customers of the bookstore are based on real incidents. And finally, we felt that Gloria’s bond with the books and their authors gave her character more depth.”
Sarser and Matta previously worked together on their debut feature, “Los Modernos,” which features parallel stories about two women striving to find a balance between their personal and professional careers. The film had a 15-week theatrical run and rose to the No. 1 spot in the box office before playing in more than 25 festivals .
“With Marcela we share a way of thinking and feeling for cinema; we are in that sense, in total harmony so it is very easy for us to work together,” Sarser mused. “She also has a great intuition for detecting nuances in the actors’ performances and corrects them at the moment; it is like a battle we fight back to back, it’s fun,” he continued. “She is also the executive producer, along with L.A.-based Gabriel Silva Lamboglia, therefore she has a global vision of the project at all levels,” Sarser added.
“Ghosting Gloria” bows in Uruguay on Oct. 28.