NSW producer Sonja Armstrong has been selected to participate in the New York-based NO BORDERS Co-Production Market in September with her film Almost French.

The best-selling novel of the same name by Sarah Turnbull has been adapted for the screen by Kate Dennis, who will also direct the film.

The New South Wales Film and Television Office (FTO), Film Victoria and the New Zealand Film Commission (NZFC) formed a strategic partnership in 2004 to secure places at NO BORDERS, which is held during the annual Independent Film Producer Market (IFP) in New York City.

The FTO will fund Sonja’s participation in NO BORDERS in order for her film to receive invaluable exposure to international markets. Invited producers attend round table discussions and one-on-one meetings with financiers, sales agents and international television buyers.

Sonja’s producing credits include the dramatised documentary Floating Brothel and the documentary series Is Your House Killing You and Heat in the Kitchen.

Almost French tells of an Australian journalist, Sarah, who leaves her family, home and job in Australia for Frenchman Frederic. Then reality hits. With limited French, Sarah struggles to fit in and be heard. She decides the only way to win respect is by proving herself as a journalist in Europe. Unfortunately, the honesty of her writing is an affront to Frederic and he demands she stop. In a battle between self-determination and love, Sarah must find her way through a cultural minefield to be with Frederic.

“NO BORDERS has been a very successful initiative for NSW producers. In an international environment where funding for feature films has become increasingly difficult, three projects sent to NO BORDERS by the FTO have been fully financed. Clubland was released internationally and in Australia last year. Accidents Happen, produced by Anthony Anderson, is currently in production and South Solitary, produced by Marion Macgowan, will begin production later this year,” said Tania Chambers, Chief Executive of the FTO.

Almost French is a terrific project with considerable international appeal and we believe it will be highly profiled at NO BORDERS.”

Ms Chambers noted that the Victorian selection for NO BORDERS, Lou, to be produced by Michael McMahon and Tony Ayres, and written and directed by Belinda Chayko, received development funding from the FTO in 2007.

[release from TM Publicity]

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