Bérénice Bejo, who rose to fame as the Oscar-nominated star of The Artist, is set to lead BAFTA nominee Lone Scherfig’s upcoming adaptation of The Movie Teller.
Antonio de la Torre (Marshland) will also star in the film, first adapted by Palme D’Or nominee Walter Salles (The Motorcycle Diaries) and Rafa Russo from Hernán Rivera Letelier’s acclaimed novel. The Spanish language film is an autobiographical tale of life in the mining community of Chile’s Atacama Desert, and a tribute to the inspirational power of cinema.
The Movie Teller is a Spanish, French and Chilean co-production and will shoot in the Atacama Desert in Q1 2022. Embankment are executive producers, have launched worldwide sales at the American Film Market and co-rep Latin American rights with Latido Films.
Bejo stars as María Magnolia, a woman who defiantly chases her creative ambitions, despite the hardships of life in the Atacama Desert during the 1960’s. She inspires in her daughter María Margarita (newcomer Sara Becker) a passion for cinema and, in a humble township where families are unable to afford tickets to the cinema, María Margarita soon becomes the resident “movie teller,” retelling the stories of the movies only she has seen. Through María’s fertile imagination, cinema’s classics come alive for her people, inspiring them with hope and reflecting their own struggle in her stories of drama, humor, adventure, romance and courage.
“The movie is about the survival of one of the greatest human assets — our expansive imagination and shared language,” said Scherfig, also behind An Education, One Day and Their Finest. “Fascination, knowledge, fear, anger, love and fun: The Movie Teller is highly relevant, primarily in illuminating the life of a neglected child growing up in poverty, one child amongst hundreds of millions today. The movie also reflects the magic role of storytelling on the stage and on the big screen — as a window to the world, as a place of healing as well as a place that unites people.”
The Movie Teller is produced by Adolfo Blanco (The Bookshop) of A Contracorriente Films and Vincent Juillerat of Selenium Films and Al Tiro Films.