For a second year in a row, Kino Lorber has inked a deal for Berlin’s Golden Bear winner. The indie distributor said Thursday it has acquired North American rights to Synonyms, Nadav Lapid’s drama that won Berlin’s top prize after it world premiered there in February. The pic will now get a U.S. theatrical release in the fall before hitting VOD and digital.
Synonyms is loosely based on Lapid’s own experience and stars Tom Mercier as Yoav, a young Israeli expat and ex-soldier who refuses to speak Hebrew and goes to Paris with nothing but his French-Hebrew dictionary and a backpack that eventually gets stolen. He develops a relationship with Emile and Caroline, a young bourgeois couple living below him, who aid him on his search for rebirth and a new identity. Lapid co-wrote the script with Haim Lapid.
Producers are SBS Productions’ Saïd Ben Saïd and Michel Merkt. SBS Films International sales manager Kevin Chneiweiss is executive producer.
The pic is Lapid’s third feature film following 2011’s Policeman and 2014’s The Kindergarten Teacher, which Kino Lorber also acquired and which was remade for the U.S. last year with Maggie Gyllenhaal in the lead role.
Kino Lorber last year acquired Berlin’s Golden Bear winner Touch Me Not, directed by Adina Pintilie.
The Synonyms deal was negotiated by Kino Lorber CEO and president Richard Lorber and Chneiweiss.