Alice Rohrwacher’s ‘La Chimera’ Sells Worldwide After Premiering Positively in Cannes

Alice Rohrwacher’s “La Chimera,” in which “The Crown” star Josh O’Connor plays a British archeologist named Arthur who gets involved in an international network of stolen Etruscan artifacts during the 1980s, has sold worldwide after premiering positively in Cannes.

The Match Factory has inked deals for the film in the U.K. and Ireland (Curzon); Australia and New Zealand (Palace Entertainement); Benelux (September Film); Germany (Piffl Medien); Hong Kong (Edko);  Spain (Elastica); South Korea (M&M International); China (Jetsen); Japan (Bitters End); Taiwan (Swallow Wings); Austria (Stadtkino); Baltics (A-One); Bulgaria (Art Fest); CIS (Mauris Film); Czech Republic & Slovakia (Aerofilms); Finland (B-Plan Distribution); Denmark (Filmbazar); Former Yugoslavia (MCF): Greece (Cinobo); Hungary (Cirko); Middle East and North Africa (Moving Turtle); Poland (Aurora Films); Portugal (Midas); Romania (Independenta); Singapore (Anticipate Pictures); Thailand (Documentary Club); and Ukraine (Arthouse Traffic). 

As previously announced, North American rights were sold while the film was in production to NEON.

Ad Vitam is co-producer and distributor of the film in France, while Filmcoopi will be releasing “La Chimera” in Switzerland and 01 Distribution in Italy.

For Rohrwacher, the film is connected to growing up in Umbria, once the center of the Etruscan civilization. But it’s also the final piece of a triptych on a territory that she started with her previous Cannes entries: “The Wonders” and “Happy as Lazzaro.” Three works that, as she has put it, pose a central question: “What to do with the past?” 

Besides Josh O’Connor also starring in “La Chimera” – which can be loosely translated as “The Unrealizable Dream” – are Isabella Rossellini as a retired opera singer; Brazil’s Carol Duarte (“The Invisible Life”) as non-Italian woman who intersects with Arthur; Alba Rohrwacher as an international artifacts trafficker; and Vincenzo Nemolato (“Martin Eden”), who plays one of the “tombaroli” — literally “grave robbers” — as artifacts thieves are known in Italy.

“Arthur, wonderfully played by O’Connor with a loping gait and a muttering command of Italian, is something of a lone-wolf tombarolo, occasionally collaborating with one particularly rowdy, raucous gang of thieves, but with a solitary mission and motives that he keeps close to his scrawny chest,” wrote critic Guy Lodge in his in which he praised Rohrwacher’s “supple and sinuous new film.”

“La Chimera” is produced, as all of Rohrwacher’s previous films, by Carlo Cresto-Dina.

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