EXCLUSIVE: 101 Studios has closed a deal for U.S. rights to the Predrag Peter Antonijević-directed Dara Iz Jasenovca (Dara of Jasenovac). the film that has been chosen by Serbia as its official submission for the 2020-2021 Academy Awards. Pic stars Biljana Čekić, Zlatan Vidovic, Nikolina Friganović, Igor Đorđević, Nataša Ninković and Anja Stanić. It is slated by 101 Studios for a February 5th, 2021 release.
Set in the 1940s, pic follows young Dara (Biljana Čekić) in Croatia as she comes face-to-face with the horrors of the Holocaust era after she is sent with her mother and siblings to the concentration camp complex known as Jasenovac. The facility was the only operational death camp during World War II not created or run by the Germans, but its overseers were no less ruthless or cruel. Overseen by vicious emissaries of the fascist Ustase government, the camp was used to murder Serbs, Jews and Roma people—and re-educating the few children deemed worthy of rehabilitation. As unspeakable atrocities unfold all around her, young Dara must summon tremendous courage to protect her infant brother from a terrible fate, to safeguard her own survival and to plot a precarious path toward freedom.
The project came to 101 Studios through board member Ron Burkle, who said about the film: “I have had tremendous respect for Gaga’s (Antonijević) work for many years and was moved by the largely unknown story told in Dara Iz Jasenovac. I believe audiences will appreciate the artistry that went into telling this compelling story thru the eyes of a young child.”
Said 101 Studios CEO David Glasser: “Dara Iz Jasenovca (Dara of Jasenovac) is the first feature film to expose the atrocities of the notoriously brutal Jasenovac concentration camp. We have a responsibility to tell this incredible story and 101 Studios feels privileged to introduce American audiences to the film.”
The film is produced by Predrag Peter Antonijević and Maksa Catovic and written by Nataša Drakulić.
Leif Cervantes de Reinstein from Sheppard Mullin handled the deal on behalf of 101 Studios.