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The Orphanage – Shahrbanoo Sadat

Annual Top Films Lists

Top 150 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2019: #91. The Orphanage – Shahrbanoo Sadat

Top 150 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2019: #91. The Orphanage – Shahrbanoo Sadat

The Orphanage

Afghan writer-director Shahrbanoo Sadat should be ready with her sophomore feature The Orphanage in 2019. Produced through Katja Adomeit of Adomeit Film, the Danish-Polish production will feature a cast of non-professional Afghans with filming to commence in Denmark and Poland. Sadat will return to work with DP Virginie Surdej (also of Nabil Ayouch’s Razzia, 2017) who lensed her 2016 debut Wolf and Sheep — which saw Sadat win the CICAE Award out of the Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes.

Gist: The Orphanage is the second chapter of a planned pentalogy of films from Sadat based on instances from the diary of her best friend Anwar. This latest project is set in 1980s Kabul at the height of the Soviet-Afghan war, featuring stories of several orphaned children forced to create new ethnic identities in order to survive.

Release Date/Prediction: Sadat has been collecting funds (recent TorinoFilmLab project) for The Orphanage since 2016 with a possible fall 2019 theatrical release in Denmark. While Cannes may be a potential form Sadat returns to, post-production may make her next project a potential contender in Venice or Toronto’s Platform program in 2019.

Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2021: France (Bruno Dumont), Passing (Rebecca Hall) and Nightmare Alley (Guillermo Del Toro). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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