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Brussels-based company Best Friend Forever has boarded “Perlimps,” an animated feature directed by Alê Abreu, the Brazilian filmmaker behind the Oscar-nominated animated feature “The Boy and the World.”

Best Friend Forever will launch international sales on the project at Cartoon Movie in Bordeaux. Now in post, the fantasy adventure film follows the journey of Claé and Bruô, a pair of secret agents from rival kingdoms who must join forces in spite of their differences to search for the Perlimps, mysterious creatures who can ultimately find a way to peace in times of war. The animation for the film was hand-drawn by Abreu and a reduced team who spent four years in a mountain village in Brazil. Abreu collaborated with senior Brazilian animator Sandro Cleuzo (“Klaus,” “Missing Link”).

The voice cast boasts Stênio Garcia (“Eu, tu, eles”), Giulia Benite (“Turma de Mônica: Laços”) and Lorenzo Tarantelli.

“With this film I was guided mainly by color, a very powerful tool that brings an important layer to the adventure and is key to the understanding of the film,” said Abreu. The rising filmmaker said “childhood is represented in the film as a physical space where everything is possible, generating an incredible power of transformation through hope.”

Abreu is best known for directing “The Boy and the World,” which earned an Oscar nomination for best animated feature in 2016 after nabbing the Crystal and audience award in Annecy, as well as the Annie award for best independent feature.

“Perlimps” is being produced by Laís Bodanzky and Luiz Bolognesi at Buriti Filmes, and Ernesto Soto, in co-production with Sony Pictures, Globo Filmes, Gloob and Alê Abreu. Set to world premiere later this year, “Perlimps” is now in post and will be released by Sony Pictures in Latin America. In Brazil, Sony Pictures will co-distribute the movie with leading independent outfit Vitrine Filmes.

The acquisition of “Perlimps” underscores Best Friend Forever’s ambition to ramp up its animation slate. Martin Gondre, who launched Best Friend Forever with Charles Bin, previously worked at Indie Sales where he worked on critically acclaimed animated features such as “My Life as a Zucchini,” “Another Day of Life” and “Tito and the Birds.”

“We rarely see a film as gorgeous as ‘Perlimps,'” said Martin Gondre and Charles Bin, Best Friend Forever co-founders. “Alé’s modern fable is masterful in raising the ecological concerns of today’s youth with such color and beauty; ‘Perlimps’ is poised to become a hit family title this year,” added the executives who created Best Friend Forever as a sister company to Indie Sales in 2019.

Eleanor Coleman, who spearheaded the film acquisition for Best Friend Forever, said the company had been following Alê Abreu and “Perlimps” for years and described the film as a “timely and important story.” She added that “Alê is one of the most original and mature independent voices working in animation.”

Best Friend Forever’s 2022 slate includes Anca Damian’s English-language animated feature “The Island” which premiered in Rotterdam and played Goteborg; Bertrand Bonello’s “Coma” which won the Fipresci award at Berlin; Jeremie Elkaïm’s “A Change of Heart” with Marina Foïs; Emmanuel Gras’ new documentary “A French Revolution,” set to premiere in competition at CPH:Dox; and “Anti-Squat” by Nicolas Silhol.