Quivoron previously directed the short film “Au Loin, Baltimore,” which played at Locarno in 2016 and, co-directed (with Antonia Buresi) “Headshot,” a documentary about today’s youth that aired on Franco-German network Arte.
“Rodeo” shot entirely on the outskirts of Bordeaux, France, and follows a young misfit and small-time thug, Julia, who is fiercely passionate about riding. One summer, she encounters a crew of dirt riders and sets off to infiltrates their male-dominated world, but an accident will compromise her ability to fit in. As its title suggests, “Rodeo” will be packed with action scenes spearheaded by Mathieu Lardot, a stunt expert who’s worked on “Jason Bourne,” “Spectre,” “Rogue City,” “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” and “Mission: Impossible – Fallout,” among others.
Gillibert’s Paris-based outfit CG Cinema said “Rodéo” will be the first film exploring the bike life scene in France. Imported from Baltimore, this underground movement has been embraced in France’s urban neighborhoods through rap music and social networks. Urban rodeos are now illegal in France as in Baltimore. Dirt bikers are also the subject of HBO Max’s critically acclaimed original “Charm City Kings,” a coming-of-age story set in West Baltimore.
Quivoron wrote “Rodeo” based on a four-year investigation into the dirt riders scene in France. Starting out as a photo-journalist, Quivoron was able to forge bonds within this community and penned the film with the involvement of several bikers.
The helmer enlisted Julie Allione, the casting director of Rebecca Zlotowski’s “An Easy Girl,” to come up with a cast of fresh faces, including Julie Ledru (pictured below), who never acted in a movie before and plays the lead. The rest of the cast is essentially made up of non-professional actors who are themselves bikers.
Besides Lardot, “Rodeo’s” key crew includes Raphaël Vandenbussche, the cinematographer of “My Best Part”; Rachèle Raoult, the costume designer of “La Fracture” and “Atlantique”; and set designer Gabrielle Desjean (“Ultra Pulpe”).
The movie was pre-bought by Canal Plus and Ciné Plus. Gillibert’s CG Cinéma, which had several films playing at this year’s Cannes, including Leos Carax’s “Annette” with Adam Driver and Mia Hansen-Løve’s “Bergman Island,” produced “Rodeo” which Les Films du Losange — recently acquired by Gillibert — will distribute in France and sell in international markets.
Gillibert has a track record with directorial debuts, notably “Mustang,” Deniz Gamze Ergüven’s Oscar and BAFTA-nominated, powerful film about orphan girls forced into arranged marriages in contemporary Turkey. “Rodeo” is expected to be released in 2022.