Afghan writer Atiq Rahimi returns behind the camera for first time in eight years after his award-winning Earth and Ashes.

Paris-based sales company Le Pacte is set to unveil Afghan writer Atiq Rahimi’s adaptation of his internationally acclaimed novel The Patience Stone in Berlin.

The book, winner of the French literary Goncourt prize in 2008, follows a young Afghan woman struggling to make sense of her life as she cares for her bedridden husband, a former fighter left brain-dead after being shot in the neck.

Paris-based Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani, recently seen in Vincent Paronnaud and Mariane Satrapi’s Chicken with Plums, stars as the female protagonist.

It is Rahimi’s first time behind the camera in eight years since his adaptation of his novella Earth and Ashes, set against the backdrop of the Soviet Afghan war, which premiered in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard in 2004.

The Patience Stone, which is in post-production, was shot over the summer and is produced by Michaël Gentile’s Paris-based The Film, which recently scored a French box office hit with Frédéric Beigbeder’s Love Lasts Three Years.

“The film has real Cannes potential,” says Le Pacte head of sales Camille Neel, who will be screening a promo reel in Berlin.

Other potential Cannes premieres on Le Pacte’s Berlin slate include Stephan Schesch’s The Moon Man, an animation adaptation of the children’s classic by French cartoonist Tomi Ungerer whose work has undergone something of a revival of late.

Jean-Christophe Dessaint’s feature-length animation Day of the Crows – an adaptation of Jean-Francois Beauchemin’s novel about a wild, forest-bred child, reminiscent in style to a Studio Ghibli picture– is also slated for delivery in time for Cannes.

Neel is also hoping to reveal first images of Guillaume Nicloux’s period drama The Nun during Berlin. The adaptation of Denis Diderot’s eponymous 17th century classic about a young woman forced into a convent against her will has just started shooting.

The film stars Belgian actress Pauline Etienne as the young novice opposite Isabelle Huppert as a kindly mother superior and Louise Bourgoin as a sadistic sister who preys on the heroine.

Le Pacte will also host market screenings for Jan Hrebejk’s The Innocence, John Shank’s Last Winter, Michale Boganim’s Land of Oblivion and Damien Odoul’s The Rest of the World during the EFM.