Cohen Media Group has acquired all U.S. and Canada rights to writer-director Eran Kolirin’s “Let It Be Morning,” Israel’s official submission to the international film race at the 2022 Academy Awards, the company announced on Thursday.
The title world premiered earlier this year in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes, and went on to win nine of the 11 noms it received last month at the Ophir Awards — Israel’s Academy Award-equivalent — including best film, director, actor and actress.
Based on a novel of the same name by Palestinian author Sayed Kashua, the film tells the story of Sami (Alex Bakri, of “Mars at Sunrise”), a Palestinian-born Israeli citizen who finds that the Arab village where he grew up is one day suddenly surrounded by an ominous wall, forcing him to confront new questions of identity and national belonging.
It also stars Juna Suleiman (“The Time That Remains”), Salim Dau (“The Crown”) and Ehab Salami (“Wajib”). It was produced by Nadav Palti, Ra’anan Gershoni, Keren Michael, Tami Mozes Borovitz and Yoni Paran. It is a Dori Media production in collaboration with Les Films du Poisson.
The deal was negotiated by CMG senior vice president Robert Aaronson and Thania Dimitrakopoulou, head of sales at The Match Factory, which co-represented the film for North America for ICM.
Dori Media Group CEO and president Palti said he was proud that the production had found such a warm reception with critics and the Israeli academy, adding, “We are delighted that Cohen Media has committed to the film and look forward to the collaboration.”
CMG chairman and CEO Charles S. Cohen called “Let It Be Morning” “a must-see film about the state of our world today.”
“We are thrilled to bring it to the wide audience it deserves,” he said.
Aaronson added: “Eran Kolirin has brought his unique skills to a provocative subject and created a memorable film.”
Kolirin broke out with his 2007 debut, “The Band’s Visit.” He called “Let It Be Morning” a “true labor of love and a very unique collaboration.”
“I’m humbled and thrilled to be working with Cohen Media on its U.S. release,” he said.
“Let It Be Morning” will debut in theaters and on streaming next year. It will have its New York premiere on Thursday as the in-person opening-night selection of the 15th annual Other Israel Film Festival.