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2016 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Brady Corbet’s The Childhood of a Leader


If included, it would count as one of the rare Venice preemed North American premiere debuts and uncommon 35mm treats at the fest. After doubling up at the Venice Film Festival with the Luigi de Laurentiis” award for a Debut Film and the Best Director Horizons award, The Childhood of a Leader‘s Brady Corbet recently picked up another Best Director award at the Lisbon & Estoril Film Fest. A regular figure at the festival as an actor in both short and features from Gregg Araki’s Mysterious Skin era up until Antonio Campos’ Simon Killer, Corbet also had his short debut (2009’s Protect You + Me.) and writing credits on Mona Fastvold’s The Sleepwalker (2014) and last year’s short Rabbit from Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre all premiere at the festival. The available acquisitions title has had its share of extremely convinced supporters and even the detractors acknowledge the genius in Corbet’s debut oeuvre.

Gist: Co-written by Corbet and Mona Fastvold, this is the chilling fable about the rise of fascism in the 20th Century tells the story of a young American boy living in France in 1918 whose father is working for the US government on the creation of the Treaty of Versailles. What he witnesses helps to mould his beliefs – and we witness the birth of a terrifying ego.

Production Co./Producers: Chris Coen, Ron Curtis, Antoine De Clermont-Tonnerre, Helena Danielsson, Istvan Major, Mona Fastvold. Executive producers: Matthew Perniciaro, Michael Sheran, Aaron L. Gilbert, Clayton Smith, Pat Murray, Lee Stone, Brian Young, Jason Cloth.

Prediction: Choice of the litter. Spotlight. Park City at Midnight. Premieres.

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available. TBD (domestic). Protagonist Pictures (international)

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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