Directors: Rolf De Heer–Australia

The Mountain, Rolf De Heer
Courtesy Fandango Sales

Vet Australian director Rolf De Heer (“Ten Canoes”) is shooting a new film with an Aboriginal theme set in South Australia and Tasmania titled “The Mountain,” for which Italy’s Fandango Sales is launching sales at the online AFM.

“The Mountain” (pictured above in a first-look image) tells the story of a central character named BlackWoman, who is abandoned in a cage in the middle of the desert. Following her escape from the cage, “she walks through pestilence and persecution, from desert to mountain to city, to find … more captivity,” reads the film’s synopsis.

“BlackWoman walks and walks, past ruins and dunes until she finds boots, and skeletons and skulls, a wrecked world where few survive and your newly gained boots can get stolen at the point of a gun.”

“Those responsible are reluctant to release their privilege, and BlackWoman, escaping once more, must find solace in her beginnings,” it adds. The film stars Mwajemi Hussein, Deepthi Sharma, and Darsan Sharma. 

De Heer’s previous films include “Ten Canoes,” which is the first feature in an Australian Aboriginal language and won Cannes’ Un Certain Regard Special Jury Prize in 2006.

Other notable films include: “Dance Me to My Song”; “The Quiet Room”; “Alexandra’s Project”; “The Tracker”; “Bad Boy Bubby”; and “Charlie’s Country,” his third collaboration with Aboriginal actor David Gulpilil, which screened at Cannes in 2014.

“The Mountain” is supervised by Australian producer Julie Byrne (“I Am Mother,” “The Babadook”) alongside de Heer, and co-produced by Ari Harrison (“The Furnace”).

The film is a Vertigo Prods. and Triptych Pictures joint venture, financed in association with the South Australian Film Corp. and the Adelaide Film Festival. Umbrella Entertainment will distribute the film in Australia while Raffaella Di Giulio of Rome-based Fandango — which has a longstanding rapport with de Heer — is handling international sales.

Ties between Fandango and the Sydney-based director go back to 1993 when Procacci boarded Bad Boy Bubby as a producer. That film won the Venice Film Festival’s Special Jury Prize that year.