BFI Distribution announces the acquisition for UK and Ireland of the award-winning Spanish animated feature BUÑUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES, directed by Salvador Simó.
It will premiere on BFI Player on 9 July 2020 and be on offer to other digital platforms for TVOD and EST. As cinemas open later in 2020 it will be available for theatrical exhibition, including at BFI Southbank.
BUÑUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES, based on the graphic novel Buñuel en el laberinto de las tortugas by Fermín Solís, tells the true story of how Luis Buñuel made his 1933 film Las Hurdes: Land Without Bread.After the scandal of L’Age d’Or leaves the budding director with no money, his friend Ramón Acín wins the lottery and supports Bunuel to make a documentary on one of the poorest areas in Spain, Las Hurdes. Using traditional 2D animation, BUÑUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES blends Buñuel and his crew’s journey and filmmaking experience with powerful real footage from the finished documentary.
The film premiered at the Animation is Film Festival in Los Angeles in October 2018 where it won a Special Jury Award. In August 2019 it was shortlisted to be the Spanish entry for the 92nd Academy Awards for Best International Feature film (but lost to Pain and Glory). It has won numerous awards at festivals including Annecy, Chilemonos and the Málaga Spanish Film Festival, and won Best European Animated Feature Film at the European Film Awards 2019. The beautiful, haunting orchestral score by Spanish composer and pianist Arturo Cardelús has also won awards and prize nominations.
The deal was negotiated with Fabrizia Palazzo at Latido Films by BFI Acquisitions Manager Laura Dos Santos.
Stuart Brown, BFI Head of Programme and Acquisitions says: “We are really happy to have acquired the terrific BUÑUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES – a thrillingly imaginative, and appropriately surreal, animated film from director Salvador Simó. We are looking forward to introducing its unique and fascinating non-traditional telling of film history to UK and Ireland audiences.”
Fabrizia Palazzo at Latido Films says “We’re delighted that BUÑUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES will reach audiences in the UK and Ireland. It’s such an honour that the BFI has decided to acquire this very special movie. All of us at Latido believe that it is the perfect distributor for the film.”
The film’s screenplay is by Eligio Montero and Salvador Simó and the producers are Manuel Cristóbal, José M Fdez de Veg and Bruno Felix.The production companies are Sygnatia, The Glow, Submarine, Hampa Studio, Telemadrid and Canal Extremadura TV.