Showered with international awards for his three shorts, up-and-coming Hungarian director Bálint Kenyeres has been selected with his debut feature project, Yesterday, for the co-production platform Paris Project, which will run from July 5-7 as part of the Paris Cinéma Festival (July 3-13).
The director (34) has three shorts to his name: Closing Time (presented at Venice in 1999 and winner of a dozen international prizes), Before Dawn (in competition at Cannes in 2005, Jury Prize at Sundance and European Film Award 2006) and The History of Aviation (unveiled in the Directors’ Fortnight 2009).
Produced by Attila Csáky for Cameofilm, Yesterday is set to shoot in Morocco in the last quarter of 2011, with lensing by DoP Mátyás Erdély (who won acclaim in competition at Cannes for his work on Kornél Mundruczó’s Tender Son – The Frankenstein Project).
Scripted by Kenyeres, Yesterday combines a film noir-style investigation with an exploration of altered states of consciousness. The central character, 50-year-old Otto Ganz, owns a thriving building and civil engineering company that operates worldwide.
Some very costly problems on a building site in North Africa mean he has to go there (he hates travelling), to a country where he is confronted with memories of his youth, which have been carefully buried in the depths of his mind. Meetings in ministries, disinformation, the reappearance of a past love who had mysteriously disappeared, an investigation in the local underground to find her: Otto Ganz slowly plunges into a labyrinthine world where present and past intertwine.
With an estimated budget of €2m, the film already has backing from the Motion Picture Public Foundation of Hungary (MMKA). The director and his producer, who will be in attendance at Paris Project, are looking in particular for French, German, Belgian or Swedish co-producers.
Kenyeres hopes to follow in the footsteps of projects previously spotlighted by the Parisian co-production platform, including Radu Muntean’s Tuesday, After Christmas, Melissa de Raaf and Razvan Radulescu’s First of All, Felicia and Egg (followed by Milk and Honey) by Semih Kaplanoglu.