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Cannes: Sony Pictures Classics Buys Nadine Labaki’s ‘Capernaum’ In Advance of Competition Premiere

Labaki reunites with her "Where Do We Go Now?" distributor, which is already planning an awards season push for her newest drama.


Sony Pictures Classics has acquired North American and Latin American rights to Nadine Labaki’s Cannes competition title “Capernaum,” which will premiere at the festival next Thursday. SPC previously distributed Labaki’s second film, “Where Do We Go Now?” Her latest feature is billed as a “politically-charged fable” that follows a child who sues his own family. It is one of three films directed by women to compete for the Palme d’Or at this year’s festival.

Sony Pictures Classics plans to open the film in December qualifying the movie for year-end awards consideration.

“It is wonderful to have the opportunity to collaborate once again with Sony Pictures Classics. ‘Capernaum’ is very special to me, and with the passion Tom and Michael have for this film, I know this is the ideal partnership,” said Labaki in an official statement.

Actress-turned-fimmaker Labaki is a Cannes regular, a graduate of the festival’s Residence program, during which she wrote “Caramel,” which opened in Directors’ Fortnight in 2007. Her second film, “Where Do We Go Now?,” screened in Un Certain Regard in 2011.

Two years ago, Labaki was a member of the Un Certain Regard jury, which awarded its highest prize to Grímur Hákonarson’s “Rams.” Labaki’s relatively short career has already been one filled with tremendous range, from the workplace comedy/offbeat romance of “Caramel” to the tension-filled drama of “Where Do We Go Now?,” which chronicled a small Lebanese village torn apart by religious discord.

An SPC representative said in an official statement, “Nadine Labaki is one of the world’s great filmmakers. ‘Capernaum’ is  an emotionally profound experience about the world we live in and promises to be a triumph in Cannes. Nadine Labaki’s moment as writer-director is here and now. It is thrilling to be working with her.”

Deadline reports that sources said that SPC paid $1.3M for the film.

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