Germany primarily based New Docs, a world gross sales company specializing in documentaries, has boarded gross sales on documentary “Lengthy Distance Swimmer: Sara Mardini,” written and directed by Charly Wai Feldman (HBO’s “The Talwars”).
Sara Mardini fled Syria in 2015 together with her youthful sister Yusra, and when the motor of the boat they escaped on failed on the ocean crossing to Greece, the sisters used their expertise as aggressive swimmers to deliver the boat to security. Their journey made headlines all over the world, and is dramatized in Netflix movie “The Swimmers,” which opened Toronto earlier this 12 months.
The documentary begins when the fictionalized drama ends. Sara spent three years volunteering to avoid wasting refugees on the identical journey that made her so well-known, and was immediately arrested in Aug. 2018, accused by Greek authorities of working a legal enterprise with costs together with “worldwide espionage and other people smuggling.” If convicted, she faces as much as 25 years in jail and the top of her humanitarian profession. Shot over three years, the movie follows Sara’s struggle for justice and journey of self-discovery.
Franziska von Berlepsch served as editor and story advisor and Zamarin Wahdat as DoP.
The movie is produced by DOCDAYS Productions and Protected Passage in co-production with SWR and in collaboration with ARTE. It’s funded by MOIN Filmstiftung and the Malik Bendjelloul Memorial Fund. Govt producers embody Antje Boehmert, Anna von Dziembowska, Daniel Druhora and Drake Burnette. Commissioning editors for SWR are Gudrun Hanke-El Ghomri, Bernd Seidl and Simone Reuter. It was developed at EURODOC and took part within the Meeting Lab at Open Metropolis Doc Competition and First Reduce Lab.
Mindjazz Photos will distribute theatrically nationwide in Germany in March 2023, with a premiere in Hamburg.
Feldman mentioned: “Our documentary begins when the Netflix drama ends. Sara’s journey from refugee to humanitarian and accused legal marks a significant shift in attitudes in the direction of refugees and people who assist them. It was very important for Sara and our staff to place the problem within the highlight, and so started a layered and intimate portrait of the influence that criminalizing humanitarians has on a deeply private stage.”
Anna von Dziembowska of Protected Passage mentioned: “After I heard about Sara’s arrest in the summertime of 2018, I known as Daniel Druhora, a pal of Sara’s, to ask how I might assist. He mentioned ‘We’re filmmakers, let’s make a movie.’ And so we did.”
Antje Boehmert of DOCDAYS Productions mentioned: “After I obtained to know the challenge in 2019 and was invited to this co-production, I didn’t hesitate for a second. The movie addresses so many points that we’ve to barter as a society.”
Elina Krewitz of New Docs added: “We’re thrilled to have added ‘Lengthy Distance Swimmer: Sara Mardini’ to our line-up. We’ve labored with DOCDAYS Productions up to now and we look ahead to persevering with this fruitful relationship with Charly Wai Feldman’s bigger-than-life story concerning the Syrian Olympic swimmer Sara Mardini who got here to Germany as a refugee in 2015. We began pitching the documentary to pageant programmers on the IDFA and hope for a world premiere within the first half of 2023.”