UTA Lands 'Son of Saul' Writer-Director Laszlo Nemes

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'Son of Saul,' the Hungarian helmer's debut, won the Grand Prix award at Cannes earlier this year.

One of the hottest agency pursuits at Cannes this year has finally made his choice. Laszlo Nemes, whose Son of Saul wowed audiences on the Riviera and nabbed the festival's Grand Prix, has signed with UTA, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Nemes' achievement was all the more impressive given that Son of Saul, an Auschwitz drama about a Hungarian-Jewish prisoner who tries to arrange a proper burial for the body of a young boy, was his directorial debut. As buzz spread around Cannes, the Hungarian-born helmer quickly became one of the festival's most-desired unsigned talents even before his film won its second-highest honor.

Son of Saul is set to play the Toronto International Film Festival, as it moves on to the fall festival festival circuit prior to its release by Sony Pictures Classics. Hungary already has announced the film as its official foreign-language submission for the 2016 Academy Awards. Nemes, who was raised in Paris before studying filmmaking at NYU, was previously nominated for best short film at the European Academy Awards.