Vendetta Films will release Sophie Hyde’s 52 Tuesdays in Australia on May 1, working with the producers, Closer Productions.
The gender-bending drama won the Crystal Bear for best film in the Generation 14plus strand at the Berlin Film Festival.
The fest’s youth jury said, “The situation is exceptional but familiar. This year’s winning movie is both surprising and touching. It is a movie about family and the quest for identity, and despite all the conflicts, the protagonists stay connected through their love to each other. The moving story is presented in a fascinating structure and convinces with strong characters, humour, clever ideas and sensitivity.”
Emo (the musical), a short film from Australian director Neil Triffett dealing with a strange holy war in a school between Christian musicians and Emo boys, received a special mention from the youth jury.
The jury said the film "takes a look at group identity and peer pressure, with a surprising and pleasant lightness of touch. It convinced us with its firework of funny dialogues, melodies and humour, making fun of itself while never becoming ridiculous."
It's the second major award for 52 Tuesdays after Hyde won the World Cinema Dramatic Directing Award at Sundance in January.
Shot on consecutive Tuesdays for 52 weeks, the film stars Tilda Cobham-Hervey as 16-year-old Billie, who struggles with the revelation that her mother (Del Herbert-Jane) plans to change gender. Billie goes to live with her dad for a year while mother and daughter vow to meet every Tuesday.
Matthew Cormack wrote the screenplay from a story he devised with Hyde. The producers are Rebecca Summerton, Cormack, Hyde and Bryan Mason.
The first Australian film from Vendetta, it will screen at art houses in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth and Hobart.
Sales agent Visit Films sold US rights to Kino Lorber, whose release slate includes Kim Mordaunt’s The Rocket, Jia Zhangke’s A Touch of Sin, Nancy Buirksi’s Afternoon of a Faun: Tanaquil Le Clercq and Bruno Dumont’s Camille Claudel 1915. Deals were also secured for the Benelux, Switzerland and Hong Kong.
Hyde said, “Both Closer and Vendetta are hungry to get the film out to audiences in Australia. 52 Tuesdays was made in an unusual way and we hope to take the spirit of collaboration over into the release by working with the excellent team at Vendetta and a selection of wonderful cinemas.”