NEON grabs Zhang Yimou’s TIFF closer ‘One Second’
NEON has closed a deal for the North American rights to acclaimed Chinese Director Zhang Yimou’s One Second. The film, which was written by Zhang along with Zou Jingzhi and based on the novel by Yan Geling, stars Zhang Yi, Liu Haocun, and Fan Wei. The personal period drama has been selected as the Closing Night film at Toronto International Film Festival, where it will make its North American premiere.
One Second finds a rural Chinese village coming together to restore a destroyed film reel. Among them, an escaped prisoner, a young vagabond scheming to steal the reel away, and a projectionist known as Mr. Movie. The film was shot in and around the small Chinese town of Dunhuang, known for its evocative, sand dune-swathed landscape.
Jeff Deutchman negotiated the deal for NEON with Eva Diederix of Wild Bunch. Wild Bunch is handling international sales. One Second is a Huanxi Media Group Production and produced by William Kong, Ping Dong, Liwei Pang and Shaokun Xian. The film was released in China on November 27.
Academy Award-winning Director Yimou is known for acclaimed works such as Raise the Red Lantern and Hero. He recently wrapped production on the crime drama Under the Light. Recent titles include thriller Impasse, which also stars Zhang Yi.
One Second joins Celine Sciamma’s Petite Maman as the second NEON title announced for this year’s Toronto International Film Festival.
NEON recently debuted three titles to critical acclaim at the Cannes Film Festival, and took their second Palme d’Or winner in a row, just off the heels of Parasite, with Julia Ducournau’s Titane. The company also premiered Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Memoria starring Tilda Swinton, which tied for the Jury Prize, and the anthology feature The Year of the Everlasting Storm. Out of the festival, NEON acquired the breakout The Worst Person in The World from Norwegian writer-director Joachim Trier, which took the Best Actress Award for Renate Reinsve, as well as Jonas Carpignano’s festival sensation A Chiara, which won the Europa Cinemas Label as Best European film in the Directors’ Fortnight section. The company’s upcoming slate also include Jamila Wignot’s Ailey, Jonas Poher Rasmussen’s Flee, executive produced by Riz Ahmed and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, and Pablo Larrain’s Spencer.
Photo courtesy of NEON