Samuel Goldwyn Films has picked up the U.S. rights for “The Man Who Sold His Skin,” Tunisia’s short-listed entry for the international feature film Oscar. The film is represented in international markets by Paris-based Bac Films.

“The Man Who Sold His Skin” stars Yahya Mahayni as Sam, a Syrian man who decides to have a large Schengen visa, the document he desperately needs to enter Europe, tattooed on his back by a famous artist, thus becoming a human artwork to be exhibited in a Brussels museum. Turning his own body into a prestigious piece of art, Sam will come to realize that his decision might actually mean anything but freedom.

The film world premiered at Venice, where it won the best actor award for Mahayni, and went on to have its Middle East premiere at Egypt’s El Gouna Film Festival, where it scooped the best Arab film award. The movie also won France’s Lumieres Award for best international co-production.

“‘The Man Who Sold His Skin’ is a powerful film that draws you in, utilizing drama and satire to tell a story that intertwines humanity and art,” said Peter Goldwyn of Samuel Goldwyn Films.

“I am honored that Samuel Goldwyn Films is going to distribute our film in the U.S.,” said Ben Hania. “They have a long history of successfully distributing excellent films, and I am thrilled that ‘The Man Who Sold His Skin’ is going to join that impressive list.”

The film stars Dea Liane, Koen De Bouw and Monica Bellucci. The pic marks Ben Hania’s follow-up to “Beauty and the Dogs,” a drama which world premiered at Cannes in Un Certain Regard in 2017. The helmer’s previous credits include “Le Challat De Tunis” and “Les Imams Vont À L’école.”

“The Man Who Sold His Skin” is produced by Nadim Cheikhrouha of Tanit Films along with Habib Attia, Annabella Nezri, Thanassis Karathanos, Martin Hampel and Andreas Rocksen of Cinetelefilms. Twenty Twenty Vision Filmproduktion, Kwassa Films, and Laika Film & Television produced the film.

The film’s distributors are Eksystent Distribution in Germany, FilmLaden in Austria, Folkets Bio in Sweden, Hakka Distribution in Tunisia and Art in the Middle East.

Bac Films has sold the film to Japan (The Klockworx), South Korea (PanCinema), Brazil (Providence Filmes), Italy (Wanted Cinema), Switzerland (Trigon Film), Portugal (Paris Audiovisuals), Denmark and Norway (Another World Entertainment), Taiwan (Creative Century), Brazil (Providence Filmes), Benelux (Cinéart), Turkey (Bir Films) and Russia (Ten Letters), among others.