Deckert Picks Up Levan Koguashvili’s ‘Gogita’s New Life’

Emilio Mayorga
Variety

Leipzig-based sales company Deckert Distribution has acquired worldwide sales rights to Levan Koguashvili’s “Gogita’s New Life,” a production from Koguashvili’s own label Kino Iberica in Georgia, made in co-production with Croatia’s Embrio Russia’s Moskvitch Studio and Tato Film, based in the Ukraine.

Selected for Karlovy Vary’s Docu Talents workshop this year, “Gogita” follows a man’s efforts to enjoy a second chance in life after 14 years in prison. Set in the Georgian sticks, in tragicomic tones the documentary depicts Gogita’s new relationship with Maka, a woman not as pretty as Gogita’s mom would like, though she bakes marvellous cakes.

“‘Gogita’ fits perfectly into our slate. We want auteur films and are always looking for titles coming out of Eastern Europe,” said Heino Deckert, who launched Deckert Distribution, a documentary world sales and distribution company, in 2003.

With “Gogita,” Koguashvili returns to documentary, which he explored with “Women of Georgia” and the short “Father and Son.”

Deckert’s slate at IDFA also comprises Nima Sarvestani’s “Prison Sisters” –a story about attempts to reveal the truth behind the murder of a prisoner in Afghanistan by her cell mate who then escaped to Sweden, Rehad Desai’s “The Giant Is Falling,” about the failures and achievements of 22 years of democracy in South Africa, and Șerban Georgescu’s “Cabbage, Potatoes and Other Demons,” a semi-satirical report about modern-day agriculture in Europe.

Vitaly Mansky’s “Close Relations,” Sergei Loznitsa’s “Revue” and Tamara Stepanyan’s “Those from the Shore” completed Deckert’s IDFA lineup.

“Relations” portrays Ukraine after the Maidan revolution, “Revue” Soviet life in the 1950s and 1960s. “Shore” looks at the plight of Armenian asylum seekers.

Tbilisi-born Koguashvili is a leading exponent of Georgian recent cinema. His debut film, neorealist drama “Street Days,” drew the attention at the Rotterdam Festival in 2010, but he broke through to international recognition with his sophomore outing, “Blind Dates” (2014), which collected numerous nominations and awards including best film at the Zagreb Fest and Abu Dhabi’s New Horizons, and a Fipresci nomination at Berlin, as well as the Audience Award at Palm Springs.

Koguashvili’ Kino Iberica won an incentive from the Georgian National Film Centre for his next feature, “Brighton 4th,” a dramedy to be co-produced with Bulgaria’s Art Fest, France’s MACT Productions and Russia’s New Media Order. Script is co-written by Koguashvili and Boris Frumin (“Blind Dates”). It will turn on a Georgian wrestler’s trip to Brooklyn to try to pay off his son’s gambling debt.

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