Client news · 13 November, 2017

Syndicado launches film sales division and reveals documentary slate for IDFA

Boom! client Syndicado announces it has established a dedicated film sales business based in Europe and reveals its documentary film slate for IDFA.

Boom! client Syndicado, the film and TV digital distribution company headquartered in Toronto, today announces it has established a dedicated film sales business based in Europe and reveals its documentary film slate for IDFA.

Syndicado Film Sales, led by Aleksandar Govedarica, the company’s Co-Managing Director based in Europe, will specialise in theatrical, digital and broadcast sales for documentary films. 

The division’s IDFA slate includes award-winning documentary ‘Taste of Cement’ about the conditions of Syrian workers in Lebanon and the struggles they face as refugees; the world premiere of a ‘A Woman Captured’, harrowing story about a woman’s escape to freedom from a life of modern day slavery; and ‘Queerama’, a British film capturing relationships, desires, fears and expressions of gay men and women in the 20th century, mined from the BFI archives.

Syndicado Film Sales’ seven-film slate features an impressive line-up of international productions including three world premieres and three films nominated for IDFA awards;

Taste of Cement

Taste of Cement

‘Taste of Cement’ (1 x 85’)

Shortlisted for the European Film Awards Documentary Selection in 2017, ‘Taste of Cement’ tells the story of Syrian workers in Beirut and shows what it means to be exiled in a war-torn world with no possibilities to return home. The workers are locked in the building site and under strict curfew. Their only contact with the outside world is the hole through which they climb out in the morning to begin a new day of work and a small TV set from which they get the nightly news from Syria.

‘Taste of Cement’ is produced by Syrian non-profit organization Biddayat for Audiovizual Arts and BASIS BERLIN Filmproduktion with the support of the Doha Film Institute, and the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture in co-production with Enjaaz. It earned an impressive number of accolades, including the prestigious Sesterce d’Or La Mobiliere at the Visions du Reel and The Harrell Award for Best Documentary Feature at the Camden International Film Festival.

‘A Woman Captured’ (1 x 89’)

Making its world premiere at IDFA and nominated for the IDFA Feature Length Competition award, ‘A Woman Captured’ follows the harrowing story of Marish, a 52-year-old Hungarian woman who has been serving a family for a decade – working 20 hours a day without getting paid, treated like an animal with barely any food to eat and no bed to sleep in.

She spends the days with fear in her heart, but dreams of getting her life back.

The presence of the camera whilst still captive helps Marish realize she isn’t completely alone. She begins to show signs of trust with director Bernadett Tuza-Ritter and after two years of filming, she finally builds the courage to escape her captors. ‘A Woman Captured’ follows Marish’s heroic journey back to freedom.

‘A Woman Captured’ is directed by Bernadett Tuza-Ritter, produced by Julianna Ugrin and Viki Réka Kiss from Budapest-based Éclipse Film, and is co-produced by Germany’s CORSO Film.

‘Nothing Like Before’ (1 x 92’)

Celebrating its world premiere at IDFA, ‘Nothing Like Before’ is a Czech film portraying 19-year-olds Teo, Renata, Anicka, and Nikola at a time when looming adulthood is beginning to cast an anxious shadow over their carefree high school existence.

They lead normal teenage lives, attend the same school in a small Czech border town and all face a momentous challenge whose outcome will change their life forever. And it’s not only about final exams… Who will succeed, who will fail, and who will truly come of age? The camera is virtually one with the characters for the most part, immersing the viewer in the world of each protagonist. Dynamic editing underscores the young generation’s restlessness and lack of focus. ‘Nothing Like Before’ offers a cinematically captivating look into the lives of teenagers forced to grow up sooner than they would like to.

‘Nothing Like Before’ is directed by Lukas Kokes and Klara Tasovska  and produced by Prague-based Nutprodukce.

Other related stories

Interested? Find out more about Boom! here



‘The Family’ (1 x 106’)

The Family follows 14-year-old Matej over the course of ten years. After having to take care of his special needs parents and his older brother, he spent an isolated youth among his peers. As he becomes a father himself at the age of 20, it seems at first that he is able to transcend life patterns and create a family on his own. However, his behavioural and personality patterns disturb the young family’s peace.

‘The Family’ had its world premiere at the Locarno International Film Festival. It is produced by Cyinger Film and co-produced by RTV Slovenija.

“An impressive, disturbing slice of cinema’ – Variety

‘Queerama’ (1 x 70’)

Directed by award-winning British documentary director Daisy Asquith and mining the jewels of the BFI archive, ‘Queerama’ tells the story of an extraordinary century of gay experiences on film. With a soundtrack by Alison Goldfrapp, Hercules & Love Affair and John Grant, the film takes us into the relationships, desires, fears and expressions of gay men and women in the 20th century – a century of incredible change.

‘Queerama’ premiered at the Sheffield Doc/Fest earlier this year, and is produced by Welsh production company ie ie Productions Ltd.

‘City of the Sun’ (1 x 104’)

Up to 50 percent of the world’s manganese, a vital metal across the globe, used to be mined in Chiatura, Georgia. Today, it resembles an apocalyptic ghost town.  ‘City of the Sun’ portrays a few of the remaining inhabitants. Music teacher Zurab dismantles ramshackle concrete buildings and sells the iron girders to make some money on the side. Archil still works in the mine but his real passion is the local amateur theatre group. Despite being malnourished, two young female athletes still train stoically for the next Olympic Games.

In his documentary debut, director Rati Oneli provides fascinating insights into a living environment whose bleak industrial ruins appear at once colossal and like a film set.

Produced by Dea Kulumbegashvili, Rati Oneli and Jim Stark, ‘City of the Sun’ swept up numerous awards, including the Heart of Sarajevo for Best Documentary Film, Award of the Federal Foreign Office for Cultural Diversity at goEast, and Best Feature of the International Competition Section at DOCUMENTAMADRID.

‘The Next Guardian’ (1 x 73’)

Competing in the IDFA Competition for First Appearance, ‘The Next Guardian’ is shot in a remote village in the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan, where brother and sister Gyembo (16) and Tashi (15) aimlessly roam while their father meticulously polishes the ancient relics inside the altar of their family monastery. The family has been taking care of the monastery from one generation to the next for thousands of years. Following with tradition, his father wants Gyembo to carry on the family heritage but he has other desires just like his sister. The bittersweet film takes us inside a Bhutanese family where the contrasting dreams of two generations are caught in a time clash. ‘The Next Guardian’ is celebrating its world premiere at IDFA.

The film is directed by Arun Bhattarai and Dorottya Zurbo and produced by ÉCLIPSE FILM Kft. 

“We’re incredibly excited and proud to present such a range of visually stunning and emotionally moving stories from around the world at IDFA this year. As the doc world’s lens focuses on Amsterdam, we hope these stories raise awareness of the underlying issues they present and ultimately affect a positive change in perspective and understanding”.

— Syndicado CEO Greg Rubidge.