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VISIONS DU RÉEL 2021 Competition

EXCLUSIVE: Trailer and poster for Visions du Réel and CPH:DOX title Holgut

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- In Liesbeth De Ceulaer’s new documentary, the dreams of a child join the obsessional hope of a scientist to one day clone extinct species

EXCLUSIVE: Trailer and poster for Visions du Réel and CPH:DOX title Holgut

The Siberian permafrost is melting. Ancient bones rise up from the ground and wild animals seem to have disappeared. Three Yakutians venture into the vast wilderness on different quests. Villager Roman and city boy Kyym hunt for a rare reindeer while, not so far away, scientist Semyon scourges the permafrost for a viable cell of the mammoth, which he needs to clone the extinct animal. In the midst of an ongoing mass-extinction of fauna and flora, of a Siberian Ivory Rush, and at the dawn of de-extinction, a contemporary myth unfolds. While Roman, Kyym and Semyon close in on their goals, both the frozen earth that they walk on and reality itself melt into another state.

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This is the subject of Belgian independent filmmaker Liesbeth De Ceulaer’s new documentary Holgut [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Liesbeth De Ceulaer
film profile
]
, set to co-world-premiere in the international feature competition of this year’s Visions du Réel (15-25 April) as well as in the Next:Wave Award strand of CPH:DOX (21 April-2 May). This feature promises to “boldly combine elements of fiction and documentary” and “manoeuvre effortlessly from captivating reality to visual poetry.”

De Ceulaer is based in Brussels and previously worked on Victoria [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Liesbeth De Ceulaer, Isabel…
film profile
]
(2020), Behind the Redwood Curtain (2013) and The Best Act on the Isle (2008). Speaking about her new endeavour, she said: “We are part of the natural world. When we lose parts of this world, we lose parts of our self. Our stories get punctured, they become incomplete and we can get lost. The mammoth’s tale of extinction reveals a fascinating narrative that unravels over millennia and has an ending still unknown. At the fortnight of the mammoth’s rebirth, I wonder how we will look back at this critical moment hundreds of years from now.”

Holgut was produced by Tomas Leyers for Minds Meet and co-produced by Erik Lambert for Stempel. It also received support from VAF, CFWB, the Belgian Tax Shelter and ING. Prague-based sales outlet Filmotor is in charge of its world sales.

Check out our exclusive trailer and poster for Holgut below:

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