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Victus

Andrei Tanase, Irena Isbășescu, Anamaria Antoci

Romania

synopsis

31-year-old Vera is a small-town zoo veterinarian from Transylvania. After losing her newborn baby, she starts to be obsessed about giving him the proper Eastern Orthodox burial rituals, spending more time at work and subsequently drifting apart from her husband, Toma.

When she discovers that he is cheating on her with a barely legal teenage girl, Vera refuses to affront him and decides to spend the night alone at the zoo. There, she gets drunk and after feeding a recently acquired tiger, leaves its cage unlocked. The following morning, she realizes that the animal is missing. She is forced to urgently find him before anyone gets hurt.

Roaming through the surrounding woods, accompanied by her cheating husband and a search party summoned by the local authorities, Vera goes through an intense emotional journey, experiencing a series of adventures and conflicts which push her to do some serious soul-searching and challenge her overall perspective on life.

intention

A few years ago, a female tiger escaped from a Transylvanian zoo and, after taking a several-hour peaceful stroll through a forest nearby and an uptown neighbourhood, she was shot dead by one of the search party hunters.

Around the same time, a close friend of mine lost her baby during her eighth month of pregnancy. I witnessed the impact of such an event on couple dynamics: the guilt, the alienation and the resentment it can generate between two people who otherwise genuinely care for each other.

These two arbitrary deaths somehow connected for me on a very deep level and became the starting point for a unique tragicomical story set to explore wide, universal themes like individual freedom, the obsession of control and the refusal to let go, the acceptance of randomness as an indisputable presence in our lives, the relativity of conjugal love. The film also tackles our relationship with nature and wildlife at a time when respecting and protecting the environment should no longer be a choice, but a necessity.

budget, distribution & sales

Based on a true story and dealing with universal themes such as loss and the ability to accept that which cannot be changed, the film has a strong potential to resonate with international audiences. The presence of a real tiger on set and the fact that it will be mainly shot outdoors in charming Transylvania will add visual value to our project, making it stand out from the typical Romanian films. Shooting is aimed for August 2020. A journey, a fairy tale, a quest: the tone of the film will mix drama and elements of off-beat humour, which will increase sales potential and audience appeal, making it reach out to the most demanding viewers. The project was selected at Sarajevo Film Festival’s CineLink and the script has now reached its final stage of development. Our estimated budget is € 800.000. We have already secured the selective production support from the Romanian National Film Center and from Creative Europe – MEDIA. We are looking for international co-production partners and a sales agent. We are open to discuss key positions like editing, VFX, sound and image post-production. We aim for an A-class festival premiere in order to boost the film’s domestic and international audience and to establish Andrei Tănase as a new voice in Romanian Cinema.

videos

While going through an emotional breakdown, Vera, a small town zoo veterinarian, causes the escape of a tiger.
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Andrei Tanase

Scriptwriter, Film Director

6356-irena-isbasescu
Irena Isbășescu

Production

6056-anamaria-antoci
Anamaria Antoci

Production

production notes

original title
Victus

directed by
Andrei Tănase

produced byDomestic Film
General Constantin Budisteanu 12-14
010775, Bucharest
Romania

total production budget
€ 772.500