Fortissimo Films has arrived in Berlin with several additions to its slate including new titles from threefilmmakers that the company regularly works with - Taiwan’s Tsai Ming-liang, Thailand’s Pen-ekRatanaruang and Dutch director Alex van Warmerdam.
Tsai is currently in post-production on Face about a Taiwanese director who is invited to make a film in Paris. Mostly shot in the French capital, the film is produced by France’s JBA Production with Taiwan’s Homegreen Films, Circe Films from the Netherlands and Belgium’s Tarantula.
French actors Laetitia Casta, Fanny Ardant and Jean-Pierre Leaud head the cast of the film, along with regular Tsai collaborator Lee Kang-sheng. Guest stars include Jeanne Moreau, Nathalie Baye and Mathieu Amalric.
Also in post-production is Pen-ek’s Nymph - a love story that marks the Thai director’s first foray into the realm of the supernatural. The story follows a photographer who takes his wife on an assignment into the jungle and then disappears.
Fortissimo is co-producing the film with Pen-ek’s regular Bangkok-based producing partner Five Star Entertainment.
Meanwhile, Fortissimo’s Wouter Barendrecht and Michael J. Werner are executive producing, in addition to selling, van Warmerdam’s The Last Days Of Emma Blank. Also in post-production, the black comedy follows the dying owner of a large country house who drives her staff to the brink of madness. Fortissimo has previously handled several van Warmerdam titles including his last film Waiter.
Fortissimo has also picked up the second feature from Tunisian director Raja Amari, Anonymous, billed as a coming-of-age thriller. Amari’s feature debut, Satin Rouge, picked up prizes at the Seattle and Torino fests.
These four new titles join recent pick-ups Daniel & Ana from Mexico’s Michel Franco and the remastered version of Paul Schrader’s Mishimi: A Life In Four Chapters, along with official competition titles Every Little Step and Food Inc (Berlinale Special), Miao Miao(Generation) and Unmistaken Child (Panorama).
The Amsterdam and Hong Kong-based sales agent recently hired industry veteran Chris Paton to oversee its international acquisitions team. Based in London, he will help source the kind of commercial but quality titles that can outride the current market contraction.