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Venice Winner ‘El Gran Movimiento’ Gets U.K. Release from Sovereign

Sovereign Film Distribution has acquired U.K. and Ireland rights to “El Gran Movimiento,” which won the special jury prize at the Venice Film Festival Horizons strand.

Sovereign is planning a theatrical release in 2022.

Following its world premiere at Venice, the film will be screening at the San Sebastián International Film Festival, where it is nominated for the Zabaltegi-Tabakalera Prize, and also at the New York Film Festival in late September.

Bolivian writer-director Kiro Russo’s “El Gran Movimiento” (The Great Movement) follows a young man who arrives in the big city after a seven-day walk, where his persistent ill health sees him seek alternative methods of rejuvenation. The film explores the collision of nature and urbanization.

Russo said: “I wanted to make a film about La Paz, with characters who could provide a singular point of view upon the city. I found these characters in Elder, a young miner, and in Max, a tramp whose peculiar positions in the society allowed me to observe the city as a whole, to see its systems, architecture and changes. Freely inspired by their lives, I imagined this story of illness and healing to take us into the heart of the social fabric of this city and reveal the lives of its invisibles.”

The cast includes Julio Cézar Ticona, Max Bautista Uchasara, Francisca Arce de Aro, Israel Hurtado and Gustavo Milán.

Russo’s debut feature “Dark Skull” (2016) played 80 festivals and won numerous awards including at Locarno and Cartagena.

Sovereign CEO Andreas Roald said: “’El Gran Movimiento’ is a striking film, atmospheric and profound, from a truly unique and original artist. Sovereign is thrilled to support writer/director Kiro Russo’s talent and bring his film to U.K. and Irish audiences.”

‘El Gran Movimiento’ is produced by Kiro Russo and Pablo Paniagua at Socavón Cine, Alexa Rivero at Altamar Films, in association with Dan Wechsler at Bord Cadre films, Andreas Roald at Sovereign Films, Jamal Zeinal-Zade, Miguel Angel Peñaloza, and the Doha Film Institute. World Sales are handled by Belgian outfit Best Friend Forever.

Sovereign, which specializes in distributing auteur-driven feature films, recently acquired Radu Jude’s Berlin Golden Bear winner “Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn,” Kirill Serebrennikov’s Cannes competition title “Petrov’s Flu” and Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s “Memoria,” which won the Cannes jury prize. Sovereign will release the three films after they receive their U.K. premiere at the BFI London Film Festival in October.

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