Cannes: Neon Nabs Alice Rohrwacher’s ‘La Chimera,’ Starring Josh O’Connor, Isabella Rossellini
Neon’s Cannes spending spree continues, with the distributor acquiring North American rights to Italian auteur Alice Rohrwacher’s La Chimera, starring Josh O’Connor and Isabella Rossellini.
Written and directed by Rohrwacher, the film is set in the 1980s in the clandestine world of the tombaroli — or tomb robbers — and tells the story of a young English archaeologist (O’Connor) caught up in the illegal trafficking of ancient finds.
Completing the cast are Carol Duarte, Alba Rohrwacher and Vincenzo Nemolato. The film has wrapped phase one of production in Tarquinia and southern Tuscany and will continue in August/September in central Italy and Switzerland.
The film is produced, as all of Rohrwacher’s previous films, by Carlo Cresto-Dina with his company Tempesta and long-time backer Rai Cinema, in co-production with Neon, Amka Films (Switzerland) and Ad Vitam Production (France) in partnership with Arte France Cinema, Canal +, Ciné +, RSI/SSR SRG (Switzerland) and French distributor Ad Vitam.
Executive producers are Tom Quinn, Eli Bush, Jeff Deutchman, Manuela Melissano, Alexandra Henochsberg, Pierre-François Piet and Michael Weber. Public funds sustaining the project are from CNC Cinéma du Monde (France) and Federal Office of Culture FOC (Switzerland).
La Chimera re-unites Rohrwacher with several longtime collaborators, including top French DOP Hélène Louvart, editor Nelly Quettier, production designer Emita Frigato and costume designer Loredana Buscemi. The casting was curated by Chiara Polizzi and Fiona Weir.
Neon’s Jeff Deutchman and Mason Speta negotiated the North America deal with The Match Factory and UTA. The Match Factory is also representing international sales. UTA represents Rohrwacher.
The deal marks the latest in a growing list of collaborations between The Match Factory and Neon, following films including Memoria by Apichatpong Weerasethakul, the anthology feature The Year of the Everlasting Storm, as well as The End by Joshua Oppenheimer.