Film Constellation has sealed a first raft of pre-sales in key territories on French female-led revenge feature “Animale,” directed by Emma Benestan (“Fragile”) and starring César winner Oulaya Amamra (“Divines”).
The pre-sales include Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy (Plaion), Spain (Filmin), Portugal (Nos Lusomundo), former Yugoslavia (MCF Megacom) and Middle East and North Africa (Falcon). Wild Bunch Distribution will release “Animale” in French theaters next year.
Principal photography has started on the film, which is produced by June Films.
The action takes place in the southern French region of Camargue, infamous for its traditional bull fighting. In this male-dominated environment, 22-year-old Nejma trains hard to fulfill her dream of winning the upcoming annual competition.
When she is mauled after a drunken celebration, she starts to notice disturbing changes. Meanwhile, news of a rogue violent bull on the loose terrifies the community. Young men are being murdered everywhere, and the beast is nowhere to be seen.
The film’s creative team includes celebrated cinematographer Ruben Impens (“Titane,” “The Eight Mountains,” “The Mustang,” “Beautiful Boy”), with casting by Cendrine Lapuyade (“Sheherazade,” “Salem”), sound design by Anne Dupouy (“Mother and Son,” “The Death of Louis XIV”), set design by Eve Martin (“Close,” “The Beast in the Jungle”) and makeup/SFX by CLSFX Atelier 69 (“Vermin,” “Animal Kingdom,” “Benedetta”).
After directing several acclaimed short films — “Un monde sans bêtes” (Clermont Ferrand, 2018), “Goût bacon” (Clermont Ferrand, 2017, Special Mention, shortlisted for the César Awards) and “Belle Gueule” (Palm Springs, 2015, Jury Prize, Cannes Short Film Corner, winner of the CNC quality award) — Benestan hijacked the traditional codes of the romantic comedy with “Fragile,” released in French theaters in 2021 by Haut et Court. She recently worked as artistic director on the Netflix series “Vampires,” starring Amamra, and co-wrote the short film “The Right Words,” nominated at the 2022 César Awards after its premiere in competition at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival.
“Animale” is a co-production with Frakas Prods. in Belgium and broadcaster France 3 Cinema.
June Films is currently in post-production for the first French series for HBO Max Original’s future streaming platform, to be launched in 2024. Directed by Just Philippot (“Acid,” “The Swarm”), it stars Laure Calamy (“Ten Percent,” “Full Time”) in the main role. The miniseries in four episodes is an adaptation of “La Mythomane du Bataclan,” a true story about a woman who lied while pretending to be a survivor of the November 2015 terrorist attack at the Bataclan nightclub, going so far as to join an association of victims.
June’s credits also include animation short “La Perra,” directed by Carla Melo Gampert and produced alongside Colombia’s Evidencia Films, which has been selected to play at Toronto Film Festival after its Cannes premiere.
Film Constellation’s fall slate includes Venice out of competition concert documentary “Ryuichi Sakamoto Opus” by Neo Sora; Giornate degli Autori’s closing Film “Coup!,” starring Peter Sarsgaard; Telluride, Toronto and San Sebastian-bound bossa nova themed animation “They Shot the Piano Player” by Academy Award winner Fernando Trueba and Academy Award nominee Javier Mariscal; Toronto Industry Selects and San Sebastian closing film “Dance First”; and San Sebastian Competition drama “Un Amor” by Isabel Coixet, starring Laia Costa.
- Female-Led Revenge Movie ‘Animale,’ Starring Cesar Winner Oulaya Amamra, Closes Pre-Sales to Key Territories (EXCLUSIVE)
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