Berlin: Neon Takes North American Rights on Farm Animal Doc 'Gunda'

Egil Håskjold Larsen/Sant & Usant
'Gunda'

The documentary about farm animals from 'Aquarela' director Victor Kossakovsky has won over Joaquin Phoenix, who joined the project as an executive producer.

Neon is moving from Parasite to pigs, taking North American rights to Gunda, a documentary about farm animals from Aquarela director Victor Kossakovsky.

Gunda has been a critical and audience hit at the Berlin International Film Festival, where it had its world premiere in the festival's Encounters section earlier this week. The black-and-white film follows the lives of the titular sow Gunda, as well two ingenious cows and a scene-stealing, one-legged chicken, with no voiceover and no accompanying music.

Joaquin Phoenix, who used his Oscar acceptance speech to call for a more humane treatment of animals, has come on board as an executive producer on Gunda.

Kossakovsky's previous film, Aquarela, a look at water and the fragility of life on earth, was released by Sony Pictures Classics and earned around $624,000 domestically.

Sant & Usant produced Gunda, which is a co-production with Louverture Films. Anita Rehoff Larsen produced with Joslyn Barnes and Susan Rockefeller as co-producers. Tone Grottjord-Glenne and Phoenix are executive producing.

Jeff Deutchman negotiated the deal for Neon along with UTA Independent Film Group on behalf of the filmmakers. Cinephil is handling international sales.

Neon most recently made history with Bong Joon Ho’s Parasite, the first non-English language film to win the best picture Oscar.