EXCLUSIVE: Dark Star Pictures has acquired the North American distribution rights to Zoe Wittock’s Jumbo. The French-language coming-of-age love story is eyeing a theatrical release for fall 2020. Dark Star’s president Michael Repsch negotiated the deal with Pip Ngo of XYZ Films.
Jumbo, which stars Noémie Merlant (Portrait of a Lady on Fire, Paper Flags) debuted at Sundance earlier this year in the World Cinema Dramatic Competition before heading to the Berlin International Film Festival. Based on a true story, the film follows Jeanne, a shy young woman who lives at home with her uninhibited mother and works as a cleaner at an amusement park. During her late-night shifts, she begins spending time with the alluring new Tilt-A-Whirl ride that she decides to call Jumbo — and she strikes an intimate bond with the ride. She ends up being seduced by “his” red lights, smooth chrome and oily hydraulics. As a result, she wants to pursue a thrilling new relationship with Jumbo.
“Having been trained in the US as a filmmaker (at AFI), I’ve always felt like a product of both American and European sensibility,” said writer-director Wittock. “Sundance, which had always been a dream of mine, has offered us an extraordinary window into the American market, and I couldn’t be more excited to get it out to this audience!”
“Jumbo is a tour de force featuring stunning performances, neon-soaked visuals and one of the most unique storylines you will ever encounter,” adds Repsch. “Zoe Wittock’s debut feature will turn heads and leave audiences talking for years to come.”
Jumbo is being sold worldwide by WTFilms.