Award-winning French documentary distributor Java Films has grabbed world rights to Anna Giralt’s “Robin Bank,” a doc competition entry at this year’s Malaga festival.
Produced by Jorge Caballero at Catalan-Colombian Gusano Films, Germany’s Indie Film and Catalan pubcaster TVC, in partnership with Arte France – La Lucarne, “Robin Bank” tells the story of Catalan activist Enric Durán who, between 2005 and 2008, managed to take out €500,000 ($550,000) in loans from 39 different banks which he never reimbursed, instead using the money to fund social projects.
Imprisoned for two months, Durán was released on bail, and while he awaited trial, fled the country, declaring himself a fugitive.
The film received warm a welcome from audiences at its recent world premiere at Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival.
‘‘ ‘Robin Bank’ is a unique story that really speaks to our times. It combines a strong personal story with incredible access and asks fundamental questions about capitalism, underground activist movements and how we can change our world,” Kathryn Bonnici, head of acquisitions and development at Java Films told Variety. “We expect a great performance at festivals and on VOD circuits, as well as appealing in traditional TV slots.”
Java Films’ credits include Sara Creta’s “Libya: No Escape from Hell,” Marion Van Renterghem’s “Looking for Merkel.”
Durán himself contacted Giralt several years ago to shoot a project he was working on. While the filmmaker didn’t accept that specific project, she took the opportunity to tell his story, “because it connected me to something that I thought I had lost – faith in our actions and the belief that we can promote change,” Giralt said.
As her feature- debut, “Robin Bank” mixes documentary techniques with personal introspection, animated excerpts and suspense, an interesting combination taking into account it’s a work with a strong social issue focus.
“We are living in an uncertain and unstable period of history: We need stories that help us believe that another world is possible,” Giralt argued.
Gusano Films’ Caballero was chosen as a Spanish producer to track by Variety in 2020. His productions include León Siminiani’s “The Stillness Syndrome” and Málaga Audience Award and Special Jury Mention winner “The Other Side,” directed by Iván Guarnizo, another Variety Spanish talent to track.