As expected, frequent foreign Oscar distributor Sony Pictures Classics has acquired the North American rights to World War II drama “The Notebook,” the shortlisted Hungarian entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar. The film is directed by Janos Szasz (“Woyzech”) and shot by Christian Berger (nominated for Michael Haneke’s “White Ribbon”). “To make this movie was a wonderful and a painful journey for me, like a time machine, took me back into the war time,” said Director Janos Szasz. “The jungle of fear and immorality.”
The official synopsis is below.
Set on the onset of WWII, THE NOTEBOOK, which stars Ulrich Thomsen (THE CELEBRATION) and Ulrich Matthes (DOWNFALL), tells the story of thirteen year old twins abandoned by their parents and forced to live with their cruel grandmother in a village on the Hungarian border. Studying the evil surrounding them, the twins learn to rely on their loyalty to one another, ultimately surviving in the face of challenging circumstances.
Produced by Intuit Pictures, in co-production with Hunnia Filmstudio, Amour Fou and Dolce Vita Films, “The Notebook” was adapted from Agota Kristof’s bestselling novel and won the The Grand Prix Crystal Globe at the 2013 Karlovy Vary Film Festival, where it world premiered. The film also received The Europa Cinemas Labels Award, which supports theatrical exhibition in Europe, and played at the 2013 Toronto Film Festival.
Sony Pictures Classics acquired the film from Beta Cinema, who they have partnered with in the past on “The Lives of Others,” “The Counterfeiters” and “In Darkness.” “We have never really seen a movie quite like this,” stated SPC’s Tom Bernard and Michael Barker. “Based on a famous European novel, ‘The Notebook’ portrays the World War II experience as a Grimm fairy tale brimming with darkness and foreboding evil. It is fresh, brilliantly told by director Janos Szasz with stunning cinematography by the great Christian Berger.”