Fortissimo Films has acquired world rights (excluding CIS) to writer-director Guka Omarova'sNative Dancer, about a spiritual healer from Kazakhstan. (The film debuted in Sochi under the title Baksy.)

The film was co-written and produced by Sergei Bodrov. Native Dancer was co-produced and financed by The CTB Film Company, The National Studio Kazakhfilm, Kinofabrika and Les Petites Lumieres.

The deal was negotiated between Fortissimo co-chairmen Wouter Barendrecht and Michael J. Werner and producers Sergey Selyanov (CTB) and Natacha Devillers (Les Petites Lumieres).

The film-makers said that the feature 'is scheduled to premiere this fall at one of the upcoming major international festivals.'

Barendrecht said: 'We are thrilled to be working with the very talented Kazakh filmmaker Guka Omarova and to be re-united with Sergei Bodrov, with whom we worked on his Prisoner Of The Mountains and Bear's Kiss. Natacha Devillers is a top quality producer and we feel the trio make the perfect team for a wonderful and exciting film.'

Selyanov added: 'Native Dancer is our second collaboration with Guka. We have the utmost confidence in her talents and we look forward to making many more films with her in the coming years.'

In Native Dancer, Aidai (Umarbekova Nesipkul), an old healer, has been living off the land of a rich businessman (Amankulov Farkha) but then local authorities force her off to build a petrol station. When the station burns down and the landowner's son is kidnapped, Aidai must return to help.

Omarova's Schizo played in Cannes 2004 Un Certain Regard. She also served as casting director and second unit director on Sergei Bodrov's hit Mongol.