Sony Pictures Classics announced today that they have acquired the North American rights to The Notebook, the Hungarian entry for Best Foreign Language Film. The film is directed by János Szász (Woyzeck, The Witman Boys), shot by Academy Award nominated Christian Berger (The White Ribbon, Cache) and is produced by Intuit Pictures, in co-production with Hunnia Filmstudio, Amour Fou and Dolce Vita Films.
Here's what János Szász had to say in a brief statement.
"To make this movie was a wonderful and a painful journey for me, like a time machine, took me back into the war time. The jungle of fear and immorality."
Sony Pictures Classics issued their own statement.
"We have wanted to buy this film following its successful showings at the Toronto Film Festival. We have never really seen a movie quite like this. Based on a famous European novel, The Notebook portrays the World War II experience as a Grimm fairy tale brimming with darkness and foreboding evil. It is fresh, brilliantly told by director János Szász with stunning cinematography by the great Christian Berger. It is great to collaborate again with Dirk Schuerhoff and Beta Cinema with whom we have shared success in the past."
Adapted from Agota Kristof's bestselling novel of the same name, The Notebook received The Grand Prix Crystal Globe, the top prize at the 2013 Karlovy Vary Film Festival, where it had its world premiere. The film also received The Europa Cinemas Labels Award, which supports theatrical exhibition in Europe, and had its North American premiere at the 2013 Toronto Film Festival.
Set on the onset of WWII, The Notebook, which stars Ulrich Thomsen (The Celebration) and Ulrich Matthes (Downfall), tells the story of thirteen year old twins abandoned by their parents and forced to live with their cruel grandmother in a village on the Hungarian border. Studying the evil surrounding them, the twins learn to rely on their loyalty to one another, ultimately surviving in the face of challenging circumstances.