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Sony Pictures Classics also picked up Latin America, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia and the Middle East rights for the Arctic road movie about human connection from Totem Films and produced by Jussi Rantamäki and Emilia Haukka for Aamu Film Company. Inspired by the novel Compartment No.6 by Rosa Liksom, the script was written by Andris Feldmanis, Livia Ulman and Kuosmanen.
The film, which stars Seidi Haarla (Force of Habit, Love & Order) and Yuriy Borisov (Petrov’s Flu), bowed in competition in Cannes. In the film, a young Finnish woman escapes an enigmatic love affair in Moscow by boarding a train to the arctic port of Murmansk after the fall of the Soviet Union.
She is forced to share the long ride and a tiny sleeping car with a larger-than-life Russian miner, but the unexpected encounter leads the occupants of Compartment No. 6 to face major truths about human connection. “Compartment No. 6 is a treasure. One of the great train movies with humor and romance, full of surprises. Just the kind of fresh movie audiences want to embrace right now. One of the best films we’ve seen here in Cannes,” said Sony Pictures Classics in a statement.
“We’re thrilled to have Juho Kuosmanen join the filmography of great auteurs that SPC represent and delighted to be working again with such a great team,” Totem Films added in its own statement. Kuosmanen’s Compartment No. 6 follows his Cannes award-winning debut, The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki.
The Hollywood Reporter said in its Cannes review of the film: “Taking its title from the confined quarters of a second class sleeping car on a train from Moscow to the Arctic port city of Murmansk, this is a melancholic drama, but also one that’s unexpectedly uplifting in its insights into human solitude and connection. As dour as it often seems with its reek of stale booze and cigarette smoke, there’s joy here for patient audiences willing to find it, and to forego the easy consolations of a more conventional outcome.”
The deal was negotiated between Sony Pictures Classics and Totem.
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