Nepalese Documentary 'Manakamana' Secures U.K. Distribution

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The scene at the Locarno Film Festival, where "Manakamana" first screened

Niche distributor Dogwoof inks a deal to bring the Locarno Film Festival special jury prize winner to U.K. audiences.

LONDON – U.K. indie niche distributor Dogwoof has snapped up U.K. rights to documentary Manakamana, directed by Stephanie Spray and Pacho Velez.

The feature doc follows a group of pilgrims who travel to Nepal and take cable cars high above the jungle to worship at the Manakamana temple.

The movie premiered at this year's Locarno Film Festival and picked up the Golden Leopard special jury prize in the Filmmakers of the Present strand.

It also enjoyed outings at the Toronto, New York and AFI Festivals.

The deal was brokered by Dogwoof distribution chief Oli Harbottle and Houston King on behalf of the filmmakers.

It is the latest film feature from the Harvard Sensory Ethnography Lab, following Sweetgrass (2011) and Leviathan (2013), both of which have been rolled out in the U.K. by Dogwoof.

Harbottle said: "It’s a great pleasure to continue our relationship with the Harvard Sensory Ethnology Lab with the acquisition of Manakanama, one of the highlights of Toronto this year. The lab continues to produce unique work, finding an increasing audience both here and abroad -- with this and their previous film Leviathan, there is a new force to be reckoned with in the documentary world."