IFC Films Nabs 'The Painted Bird' Holocaust Drama

The Painted Bird still 1 - Venice Film Festival - H 2019
Courtesy of Venice International Film Festival

Czech director Vaclav Marhoul's grim film sparked festival walkouts during first looks at Venice and Toronto.

IFC Films has picked up the U.S. rights to Czech director Vaclav Marhoul's The Painted Bird, a movie adaptation of Jerzy Kosinski’s controversial novel about an unnamed boy wandering around Eastern Europe at the end of World War II.

IFC Films plans a theatrical release next year. The Painted Bird provoked festival theater walkouts when debuting in Venice and then shifting to Toronto for a North American premiere.

Directed, written and produced by Marhoul, The Painted Bird stars Petr Kotlar, Udo Kier, Stellan Skarsgard, Harvey Keitel, Julian Sands and Barry Pepper.

"I deeply believe the movie’s advocacy of tolerance, fellow-feeling and community must reach American audiences. IFC will make that happen," Marhoul said in a statement.

The Painted Bird has also been selected as the Czech Republic's official Oscar entry in the international feature film category.

The U.S. distribution deal for the film was negotiated by Arianna Bocco of IFC Films, with CAA Media Finance and Celluloid Dreams negotiating for the filmmakers.