EXCLUSIVE: Ahead of its gala screening to open the Reel Asian Film Festival in Toronto later today comes the trailer for To Live to Sing, the feature from Johnny Ma that had its world premiere earlier this year in the Cannes Film Festival’s Directors’ Fortnight sidebar. Films Boutique is currently repping domestic sales at the American Film Market in Santa Monica.
The film centers on a traditional Chinese opera troupe that faces the demolition of their beloved theater as the push for modernization hits their rural town, painting a stark but beautiful picture of a country wresting with itself over its past and future. The cast includes members of a real-life Sichuan Opera troupe, led by Zhao Xiaoli, who play fictionalized versions of themselves.
After Cannes, To Live to Sing — the second feature from Ma, whose debut Old Stone bowed at the Berlin Film Festival in 2016 — went on to win Best Film and Best Actress honors for Zhao at the Shanghai International Film Festival.
The film has seen a slew of sales including to Epicentre in France, where it is releasing November 20. Game Theory scooped up Canadian rights ahead of its Reel Asian screening and will release it in early 2020. A Chinese domestic release is slated for the spring.
Producers are Wu Xianjian, Jing Wang, Vincent Wang and Matt Drake, and Amanda Verhagen of Canada’s Notable Content.
Check out the trailer above.
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