VARIETY January 10th, 2017 | by Elsa Keslassy
Paris-based company Indie Sales has acquired Teddy Lussi-Modeste’s sophomore feature, “The Price of Success” (“Un vrai batard”), a drama starring a topnotch French cast headlined by Tahar Rahim (“The Past,””A Prophet”), Roschdy Zem (“Bodybuilder,””Days of Glory”) and Maiwenn (“Polisse,””Love is the Perfect Crime”).
Co-written by Lussi-Modeste and Rebecca Zlotowski (“Planetarium”), “The Price of Success” tells the tale of Brahim, a stand-up comedian from a working-class family whose success destroys his relationship with his family.
Lussi-Modeste previously teamed with Zlotowski to write the script of his directorial debut “Jimmy Riviera,” a critical success and won the Audience Award at Angers, among other prizes.
A personal project for Lussi-Modeste, “The Price of Success” describes the struggle of a man trying to break free of his family’s expectations.
“The Price of Success” is produced by Kazak Productions, an up-and-coming Paris-based outfit whose credits include “The Wakhan Front” and “Corporate,” both of which are handled by Indie Sales.
Nicolas Eschbach, the boss of Indie Sales, said he was enthusiastic about re-teaming Kazak Productions, a company led by “bold young producers.” Eschbach also identified Lussi-Modeste as talent to watch.
One of the key assets of “The Price of Success” is its attractive cast. Rahim, for instance, is well-known for his critically-acclaimed roles in Jacques Audiard’s “A Prophet” and Asghar Fahradi’s “The Past” which won prizes in Cannes. Meanwhile, Maiwenn, the high-profile actress-turned-director of “Polisse,” stars in very few films — “The Price of Success” marks her first acting job since “Love is the Perfect Crime.”
“The Price of Success” also boasts a strong key crew, including Julien Poupard, the cinematographer behind Houda Benyamina’s Golden Globe nominated “Divines,” and Julien Lacheray, the well-seasoned editor of Celine Sciamma’s “Girlhood” and Zlotowski’s “Grand Central.”
“The Price of Success” is currently in post-production. Ad Vitam will release the film in France later this year. Indie Sales will likely score deals on the movie at the Unifrance Rendez-Vous mini-market in Paris.
The French company is also starting pre-sales on “Blind Spot” (“Dode Hoek”), an ambitious crime thriller directed by popular Belgian helmer Nabil Ben Yadir (“The Marchers”). Set in Flemish Belgium, “Blind Spot” turns on Jan Verbeek, an uncomprising police commissioner working for the Antwerp drug squad. Known as ‘Mr. Zero Tolerance,’ Verbeek is just about to retire from the police force to join a Far-Right party. But on his last day as a cop, Verbeek leads a massive drug raid which set off a series of unforeseeable and violent events.
Lensed by Robrecht Heyvaert (“The Ardennes,””Black”), “Blind Spot” stars Peter Van Den Begin (“The Ardennes”), David Murgia (“The Brand New Testament,””Bullhead”), Soufiane Chilah (“Black”) and Jan Decleir (“Daens”). Ben Yadir teamed with Laurent Brandenbourger, his co-writer on “Les Barons,” a Belgian comedy hit.
Set for a premiere at Berlin, the film was produced by Ben Yadir and two of Belgium’s leading producers: Peter Bouckaert, who is behind “Bullhead,” “The Verdict” and “Treatment,” and Benoit Roland, whose credits include “Wrong Elements,””Prejudice” and “Pilgrimage.”
“It’s a true crime film with very contemporary topics in the background, driven by a talented director and a remarkable addition to our line up,” said Eschbach.
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