Telefilm Canada funds the production of 17 French-language films for a total of more than $17 million

Starring, among others, Claude Legault, Roy Dupuis, Antoine-Olivier Pilon, Sophie Nélisse, Élodie Bouchez, Lucie Laurier, Patrick Bruel, Denise Filiatrault and Céline Bonnier

Montreal, April 26, 2016 — Telefilm Canada is providing financial support, through the Canada Feature Film Fund, to 17 Canadian French-language films for a total of more than $17 million. As lead investor, the organization is supporting the films Hochelaga, terre des âmes (François Girard), Jouliks (Marie-Christine Lê-Huu) and Les affamés (Robin Aubert). Telefilm is also supporting the feature films C’est le cœur qui meurt en dernier (Alexis Durand-Brault), De l’amour pour Noël (Sophie Lorain) Et au pire on se mariera (Léa Pool), Hibou (Ramzy Bedia), La chute de Sparte (Tristan Dubois), La petite fille qui aimait trop les allumettes (Simon Lavoie), Minuscule — les mandibules du bout du monde (Hélène Giraud, Thomas Szabo), Mr. Roach (Podz), Nous sommes les autres (Jean-François Asselin), Pieds nus dans l’aube (Francis Leclerc), Running (Yan England), TA3 (Nicolas Monette), Un sac de billes (Christian Duguay) and Ville Neuve (Félix Dufour-Laperrière).

Telefilm’s most recent financing decisions for French-language projects were announced on October 21, 2015.

Hochelaga, terre des âmes
Screenwriter: François Girard
Director: François Girard
Production: Max Films
Distribution: Les Films Séville
Genre: historical drama
Confirmed talent: Emmanuel Schwartz (Laurentie), Yvan Attal (Ma femme est une actrice)

Montreal. Seven hundred and fifty years ago. One location… Hochelaga, terre des âmes traces our history through the micro-cosmic vision of a single site at the foot of Mount Royal, the present-day location of Percival Molson Memorial Stadium. From an Iroquois massacre in 1267 to a football game, by way of Jacques Cartier’s visit in 1535, a spotted-fever epidemic in 1687, the rebellions of 1837, and open-brain surgery performed at the Montreal Neurological Institute in 1944, the film presents five frescos of Montreal as revealed through an archeological dig and the prayers of a Native American prophet.

Jouliks
Screenwriter: Marie-Christine Lê-Huu
Director: Yan Lanouette-Turgeon
Production: Films Vision 4
Distribution: Téléfiction Distribution
Genre: drama

A couple dies by drowning. That’s how the news is reported in the paper. Refusing to see her parents’ lives reduced to a drama of this kind, their seven-year-old daughter, Yanna, tells their real story—one of love rather than tragedy. In her luminous telling, we learn of the freedom of her parents’ lives, free of convention and preconceived ideas. A life that unfolds to the rhythm of rain and seasons, marked by the all-consuming passion of her parents, Zak and Véra.

Les affamés
Screenwriter: Robin Aubert
Director: Robin Aubert (À l’origine d’un cri)
Production: La maison de prod (LMDP)
Distribution: Les Films Christal
Genre: horror
Confirmed talent: Fabien Cloutier, Monia Chokri (Les amours imaginaires)

A village, where things have changed. A number of residents are no longer the same as before. They begin to attack their families, their friends, their neighbours… They are called “The Starving.” A handful of survivors retreats into the forest to escape them.

C’est le cœur qui meurt en dernier
Screenwriter: Gabriel Sabourin
Director: Alexis Durand-Brault (La petite reine)
Production: Forum Films
Distribution: Les Films Christal
Genre: drama
Confirmed talent: Denise Filiatrault, Gabriel Sabourin, Paul Doucet, Céline Bonnier (La passion d’Augustine), Geneviève Rioux

Flitting from job to job, 47-year-old Julien stumbles through life, an eternal misfit. But he’s just published an autobiographical book recounting his childhood memories and his relationship with his mother. Disturbing revelations of dark family secrets, the book, The Heart Dies Last, becomes a best-seller. His mother, with whom he has been completely out of touch for many years and who is now confined to a retirement home, isn’t aware of her son’s book or that he has dared talk about the unthinkable. She seeks him out, wants to re-establish contact, make up for lost time. She wants him to help him “lift the veil,” find closure, knowing full well that long-buried memories will re-emerge.

De l’amour pour Noël
Screenwriter: Catherine Léger
Director: Sophie Lorain (Les grandes chaleurs)
Production: Amérique Film
Distribution: Les Films Christal
Genre: comedy 

Jouets Dépôt hires seasonal workers, who’ll be laid off after Christmas. The job helps 17-year-old Charlotte get over a break-up. Indeed, she really likes her new co-workers. So much so, in fact, that on November 1 she realizes that she’s slept with ALL the male staff. In a state of shock, she launches an abstinence movement at work and tries to convince her female colleagues to stop sleeping with their co-workers until Christmas Day!

Et au pire on se mariera (Canada-Switzerland coproduction)
Screenwriters: Léa Pool, Sophie Bienvenu
Director: Léa Pool (La passion d’Augustine)
Production: Lyla Films
Distribution: K-Films
Genre: drama

Like hell, love is paved with good intentions. Aïcha has cause to be concerned. Her Algerian stepfather, whom she loved, loved her a little too much in return, and she can’t forgive her mother for having thrown him out of the house. Aïcha hopes that he will come back to take her away, she would rather be a blond than a brunette, she’s searching for her identity… She doesn’t really have any friends, apart from two transvestite prostitutes in the downtown neighbourhood where she lives.
When she meets Baz, a much older man (he’s 25, she’s 14), she’s instantly smitten. Baz wants to help this lost girl, but she wants much more from him, and is willing to do anything to get it.

Hibou
(France-Canada coproduction)
Screenwriter: Ramzy Bedia
Director: Ramzy Bedia
Production: Caramel Films
Distribution: Les Films Christal (Canada), Gaumont (International)
Genre: comedy
Confirmed talent: Ramzy Bédia, Élodie Bouchez, Lucie Laurier, Étienne Chicot, Philippe Katerine, Mahée Paiement, Sylvie Boucher, Isabelle Giroux, Éric Judor, François Rollin, Franck Gastambide, Joëlle Morin, Annie Dufresne, Eddy King.

Rocky is a model employee working at a pharmaceutical lab. He’s happy, though he doesn’t exist in the eyes of anyone else… He’s transparent. One evening, getting home from work, he sees a great horned owl fixing its eyes on him. Rocky understands that if he is to regain his dignity, he has to act. The next day, when he gets to work, he dresses up in an owl costume originally used for promotional purposes—but no one pays the least attention. Until the day, that is, he runs into a panda on the street. When owl meets panda, anything is possible…

La chute de Sparte
Screenwriter: Sébastien Fréchette (Biz), Tristan Dubois (based on the novel La chute de Sparte, by Biz)
Director: Tristan Dubois
Production: Parallaxes
Distribution: Filmoption
Genre: drama

When you’re young, it seems like everyone’s on your back. That’s the case with 16-year-old Steeve Simard, who’s starting his last year of high school at Polyvalente Gaston-Miron in Saint-Lambert. A misanthropic intellectual with an acute critical sense, he has trouble relating to his parents or to his classmates. He has only one friend: Samir. To overcome his loneliness and feed his imagination, he withdraws into books and music. But an incident involving the bully on the school football team, the Spartans, forces Steeve to wake up and take control of his destiny. And then there’s Véronique. When Steeve realizes he might possibly have a relationship with one of the most beautiful girls at school, his world suddenly opens up in a totally unexpected way.

La petite fille qui aimait trop les allumettes (Canada-France coproduction)
Screenwriter: Simon Lavoie
Director: Simon Lavoie (Le torrent)
Production: G.P.A. Films
Distribution: K-Films Amérique
Genre: drama

Raised by their father alone in an environment of religious fundamentalism and lies, two nameless teens live in an isolated and decrepit manor house in the country. One morning, they find their father hanged in his bedroom. Now on their own, one of the two tries to maintain the absurd rules their father imposed on them, while the other begins to discover knowledge and truth. Sensing that everything in their world is a sham, he soon learns about his true identity and his own birth…

Minuscule — les mandibules du bout du monde (France-Canada coproduction)
Screenwriters: Hélène Giraud, Thomas Szabo
Directors: Hélène Giraud, Thomas Szabo
Production: Kaïbou Production
Distribution: Filmoption International
Genre: animation

Lady Bug is accidently trapped in a cardboard box being shipped to Guadeloupe. Her father sets out for the dreamy island archipelago in an attempt to free her. In addition to crossing the sea, he has two other missions: to find his son and to save the home of his new friends, Caribbean ladybugs, threatened by a human construction site. Fortunately, he can count on help from the black ant who is accompanying him on his trip to the ends of the earth. Drawing on the same ingredients that led to the success of the previous movie in the Minuscule world, this new project follows the hilarious adventures of a family of ladybugs and their friends the black ant and the spider—a story distorted through a burlesque yet poetic lens.

Mr. Roach
Screenwriter: Claude Lalonde
Director: Daniel Grou [Podz] (Miraculum)
Production: Les Films du Boulevard
Distribution: Les Films Christal
Genre: drama
Confirmed talent: Magalie Lépine-Blondeau (19-2), Tahar Rahim, Golshifteh Farahani

Montreal in winter. After a failed suicide attempt, Malek, a poor and unemployed Lebanese immigrant, manages to build a seemingly normal life. After meeting a young Iranian woman, Shohreh, with whom he falls in love, he finds work in a restaurant. When he starts to see a therapist, his past as a thief and a childhood marked by violence and submission resurface. Confronted by his old demons, Malek seeks to regain his dignity, which he can only manage when he engages in revenge for the woman he loves.

Nous sommes les autres
Screenwriters: Jean-François Asselin, Jacques Drolet
Director: Jean-François Asselin
Production: Item 7
Distribution: Les films Christal
Genre: drama
Confirmed talent: Émile Proulx-Cloutier

A man suddenly disappears. Nature abhorring a vacuum, three people want to change their lives to fill this now empty space. Are they looking to fill the void in their own lives?

Pieds nus dans l’aube
Screenwriters: Francis Leblerc, Fred Pellerin (Esimésac)
Director: Francis Leclerc (Les beaux malaises)
Production: Attraction Images
Distribution: Les Films Séville
Genre: ?
Confirmed talent: Claude Legault (Les 3 p’tits cochons), Roy Dupuis (Le bruit des arbres)

Loosely based on the novel by Félix Leclerc, Pieds nus dans l’aube invokes the splendours of the author’s childhood between the two world wars. Without being faithful to the novel, the film adaptation forges ties—strong and surprising—between the characters through a series of dramatic situations that profoundly marked the writer’s imagination.

Running
Screenwriter: Yan England
Director: Yan England (Henry)
Production: Production deux nuits, Cinémaginaire
Distribution: Les Films Séville
Genre: drama
Confirmed talent: Antoine-Olivier Pilon (Mommy), Sophie Nélisse (The Book Thief), Patrice Godin, David Boutin, Robert Naylor, Lou-Pascal Tremblay, Anthony Therrien

Tim, 16 years old, is shy, brilliant and a naturally gifted athlete. But the pressures he faces nearly push him over the edge. Running is a psychological drama that explores what happens when human limits reach the point of no return.

TA3
Screenwriter: Benoit Pelletier
Director: Nicolas Monette (Aurélie Laflamme: Les pieds sur terre)
Production: A Média productions, Amalga Créations Médias
Distribution: Les films Séville
Genre: comedy
Confirmed talent: Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin (Gabrielle, Incendies), Martin Matte (Les beaux malaises)

Estelle, 34 years old, a wife and mother with no skeletons in her closet, lives an ordered and predictable life. But a series of events cause her to rethink her identity. Worse yet: she realizes that the roots of the crisis are sexual in nature. She decides to organize a road trip for three. A challenge that takes her way out of her comfort zone! She dives headlong into this mad quest, dragging along her partner, who feels equally out of his depth…

Un sac de billes (France-Canada coproduction)
Screenwriters: Benoit Guichard, Christian Duguay
Director: Christian Duguay
Production: Films IDL (Canada), Mitico Quad (France)
Distribution: Films Séville
Genre:
Confirmed talent: Patrick Bruel, Elsa Zylberstein, Dorian Le Clech, Baptyste Fleurial, Kev Adams, Christian Clavier

Paris, 1941. Joseph and Maurice Joffo, aged 10 and 12, live a quiet life in a Jewish immigrant neighbourhood in the city’s 18th district with their older brothers, Albert and Henri, and their parents, owners of a small beauty salon. Even as the occupying Germans force Jews to wear the yellow star and Joseph and Maurice begin to experience racism for the first time, their only real concern is winning at marbles in the schoolyard. But when anti-Jewish discrimination takes a turn for the worse, their parents decide that the two boys have to leave Paris and join their brothers Albert and Henri in France’s unoccupied zone. The boys leave home with strict instructions to never reveal, to anyone and under any condition, that they are Jewish.

Ville Neuve (animated film)
Screenwriter: Félix Dufour-Laperrière
Director: Félix Dufour-Laperrière
Production: Productions l’unité centrale
Distribution: Funfilm Distribution
Genre: drama
Confirmed talent: Robert Lalonde

A feature-length animated movie, the poetic and visually striking Ville Neuve tells of personal and shared fates through the story of Emma and Joseph, their love story, their troubled reunion.

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Françoise Lapointe, Advisor, External Communications, Telefilm Canada
(514) 283-0838, ext. 2028 or 1-800-567-0890
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