The brilliant mind behind “Raw,” the most soulful cannibalistic body horror of recent memory, has been hard at work on her second film. Though plot details are being kept under wraps, powerhouse indie distributor Neon has acquired North American rights to “Titane,” the second feature film to be written and directed by Ducournau. The filmmaker burst onto the scene with the 2017 release of “Raw,” which won the coveted FIPRESCI prize for its debut at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival before hitting theaters. “Raw” grossed $3 million worldwide, an impressive feat for a small art-horror from a first-time filmmaker. “Raw” became one of the most talked about horror films of the year, as audiences went gaga for Ducournau’s provocative feminism and David Cronenberg-esque style.
“Raw” follows a young student (Garance Marillier) who discovers some uncomfortable truths about herself (and the world) when she heads off to vet school. A longtime vegetarian, Marillier’s Justine is forced to consume meat for the first time during a revolting hazing ritual, and is shocked to discover how much she likes the taste of flesh. As Justine’s hunger for consuming meat grows, so does her desire for other pleasures of the flesh.
In IndieWire’s B+ review of the film, this critic wrote: “Female sexuality carries the same taboo as a ravenous flesh-eating teenager in this provocative feature debut… Ducournau tears down the walls of a genre so often identified with male filmmakers. (Like the father of body horror, David Cronenberg.) Shrewdly using the art-horror format to upend the traditional teen Bildungsroman, “Raw” makes it impossible to look away — as much as you might want to.”
Not much is known about the mysterious follow-up, “Titane,” but Ducournau is in good company at Neon. The distributor will also release Celine Sciamma’s “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” this year, the sensuous Cannes winner that is being pushed for France’s pick for Oscar submission. With the hip distributor behind her latest effort, “Titane” is sure to launch the filmmaker to even higher (and well-deserved) heights.
“Titane” is being produced by Jean Christophe Reymond (Kazak Productions). The deal was negotiated by NEON’s Jeff Deutchman with Eva Diederix from Wild Bunch International and CAA Media Finance.