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Adopt Films To Distribute Palestine’s Oscar Bid ‘Omar’

Adopt Films To Distribute Palestine's Oscar Bid 'Omar'

Adopt Films has acquired all U.S. rights to Palestine’s official Oscar submission for Best Foreign Language Film this year, “Omar.” The film marks filmmaker Hany Abu-Assad’s second feature selected to represent the country for the Oscar, following “Paradise Now,” which was nominated back in 2006. Adopt Films plans to a late winter release for “Omar.” Its plot revolves around a Palestinian forced to work as a double agent for Israeli intelligence. Indiewire wrote about the film after its Cannes premiere here.

Full release below:

New York-based indie distributor Adopt Films
has acquired all U.S. rights to Cannes prizewinner, “Omar,” written
and directed by Golden Globe winner, Palestinian director Hany Abu-Assad.  As Palestine’s official Oscar submission for Best Foreign
Language Film this year, “Omar” is Abu-Assad’s second feature
selected to represent Palestine at the Academy Awards.  His previous
film, “Paradise Now” was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign
Language Film in 2006.  Adopt plans a late winter U.S. release
for ”Omar.”

The gripping and heart-rending thriller “Omar”
had its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival
in September and will have its official U.S. premiere at the New York Film Festival on October 11th.  In May, the Cannes
Film Festival awarded “Omar” the coveted Un Certain Regard Jury Prize. 
Jay Wiessberg of Variety wrote: “As he did with ‘Paradise Now,’
Abu-Assad refuses to demonize characters for their poor choices. Only
too aware of the crushing toll of the Occupation on Palestinians, he
shows men making tragic, often self-destructive decisions as a result
of an inescapable environment of degradation and violence.”

“Omar” achingly captures the emotional
struggles of a young Palestinian baker whose loyalty to family and country
are complicated by his love for Nadia, a beautiful young student. 
Following the assassination of an Israeli occupation soldier, Omar,
a co-conspirator and friend of the suspected sniper, is arrested. Facing
a life sentence, he is coerced by the Israeli authorities and enlisted
as a collaborator to find the killer in exchange for his freedom. 

Adopt Films President Tim Grady said of the new acquisition: “Hany Abu-Assad has delivered a classic
story of love and betrayal. ‘Omar’ is both a Shakespearean tragedy
and a suspense thriller, replete with international intrigue and twists-and-turns,
and double-crosses. The West Bank setting only magnifies the all-out
drama and pathos of an occupied people.” 

Hany Abu-Assad said of the U.S. deal.   I wrote this ‘amour fou’ that is relevant to the human
condition and to which audiences can relate in every corner of the world.
I am humbled by Adopt’s commitment to support courageous and challenging
films, and to bring them to cinemas in the U.S.” 

“Omar” stars Adam Bakri in the title role,
Leem Lubany, Waleed F. Zuaiter (who is also one of the film’s producers),
Samer Bisharat and Eyad Hourani.  It was written, directed, and
co-produced by Abu-Assad and produced by Zuaiter and David Gerson.  Omar is a ZBROS
Production, a newly formed production company with “Omar” as it’s
first feature.  

Adopt Films President Tim Grady and its Executive VP, Marketing &
Distribution Jeff Lipsky negotiated the deal for U.S. rights with Brigitte
Suarez, Head of Sales of The Match Factory. 

Adopt Films’ upcoming releases include “The Priest’s Children,”
Vinko Brešan’s comedy hit at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival; Yuval
Adler’s award-winning Israeli thriller “Bethlehem,” and Jacques
Doillon’s “Love Battles.” Last month Adopt debuted

Sophie Huber’s Venice and SXSW selection “Harry Dean Stanton:
Partly Fiction.”

In 2012, the year it was founded, Adopt released the Academy Award
short-listed “Sister,” Miguel Gomez’s “Tabu,” Paolo and Vittorio
Taviani’s “Caesar Must Die” and Jeff Lipsky’s “Molly’s Theory
of Relativity.” 

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